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An eight-floor residential building collapsed overnight in Cairo, killing at least 18 people and injuring seven others, security sources said on Tuesday, adding that the casualty figure was expected to rise.
Emergency services, soldiers and neighbors spent the morning rifling through a 15-foot high pile of rubble in search of survivors in a densely populated northeast district of the capital. Ahmed Fawzi, a local municipal official, told state television only four people had escaped from the collapse, which he said was likely caused by an illegal extension built on top of the building. Such incidents are not uncommon in Egypt where old apartment buildings are routinely neglected and many new ones are put up without obtaining the required permits or adhering to safety standards that may raise the cost of construction.