At least 34 people were killed Saturday in a fire at a smuggled fuel depot in southern Benin near the border with Nigeria, Interior Minister Alassane Seidou said.
This morning a serious fire occurred in the town of Seme Podji. Unfortunately, we recorded 34 deaths, including two babies," he told reporters, adding that "the cause of the fire is the fuel for smuggling."
Twenty people were also injured, some seriously, and admitted to hospital, he said.
Nigeria is a major oil and gas producer and fuel smuggling is common along its borders, especially when the government provided subsidies to keep prices low.