Image:
Kamran Jebreili  /  AP
With the world's tallest tower, Burj Khalifa at the background, two boys play soccer in front of their house at the old part of Al Wasl district in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
msnbc.com news services
updated 5/10/2011 12:18:16 PM ET 2011-05-10T16:18:16

A man threw himself off the world's tallest building in Dubai, its developer said, plummeting to his death in the first suicide from Burj Khalifa tower.

Emaar Properties, the owner of the towering structure, said in a brief statement that "an incident involving a male" was reported at the tower's site at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday.

"The concerned authorities have confirmed that it was a suicide, and we are awaiting the final report," Emaar's statement also said. It did not elaborate further.

Local reports quoted security officials as saying the man fell from the 147th floor of the 2,717 foot-tall tower and landed on a deck on the 108th floor.

Reports on the websites of the Gulf News and 7 Days newspapers say the man — who is believed to be in his twenties and of South Asian background — jumped following a dispute with his company. Police said statements from co-workers indicated that his vacation request had been turned down.

Police did not immediately reply to calls by The Associated Press for further details.

According to Emaar, the skyscraper has 160 habitable stories. An observation deck is located on the 124th floor and a restaurant — billed as the highest in the world — is located just two floors bellow.

The tower was designed by Chicago-based Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, which has a long track record engineering some of the world's tallest buildings, including Chicago's Willis Tower, the tallest in the U.S. formerly known as the Sears Tower.

Burj Khalifa ranks not only as the highest building but also as the tallest freestanding structure in the world, according to its developer.

In March, a French skyscraper climber successfully climbed the tapering metal and glass tower in downtown Dubai in six hours. The 48-year-old climber, Alain Robert, used a rope and harness to comply with organizers' requirements in the Gulf sheikdom.

Late last year, actor Tom Cruise was seen dangling from the Burj during stunt filming for the latest installment of the "Mission: Impossible" series.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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