Fire erupts at Japan’s Shuri Castle –

The cause of the fire that broke out at Shuri Castle in Naha, Japan, is still unknown and there is no report of injury. Photo by Hitoshi Maeshiro/EPA-EFE

Oct. 30 (UPI) — The main building of Shuri Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Okinawa, Japan, has burned down in a predawn fire, authorities said.

Local police said the main hall and a nearby building have been destroyed, and a third building is still burning, Japan’s national broadcaster NHK reported.

The Naha city fire department said it received a call that the castle had ignited at around 2:40 a.m., Thursday, and rushed to the scene and as of 9 a.m. were still battling the blaze.

There have been no reports of injury or death and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Nearby residents are being evacuated, a police spokesperson said.

Mikiko Shiroma, the mayor of the Okinawa capital of Naha, told reporters she was saddened by the castle’s destruction.

The castle, the largest in Okinawa and a symbol of the island’s culture, was built around 500 years ago and was where the kings of the Ryukyu Dnystansty reigned for more than 400 years.

It was designated a National Treasure in 1933 but was burnt down during the Second World War. It was rebuilt in 1992.

Source: Fire erupts at Japan’s Shuri Castle –

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