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02 December 2023

Chinese state broadcaster apologises for fireworks that set off deadly hotel fire

Workers clear the ash on a street near the fire-damaged Mandarin Oriental Hotel, part of a complex that houses the Chinese Central Television's (CCTV) headquarters. (GETTY IMAGES)


China Central Television has admitted that the fireworks display that set fire to its new headquarters, gutting a luxury hotel still under construction and killing a firefighter, was so powerful that a special permit was needed but never obtained.

CCTV, which organized the Lunar New Year fireworks at its striking new complex, apologised for a celebration that went horribly wrong and said an official overseeing construction of the complex was at fault.

The business magazine Caijing said on its website Wednesday that the official, Xu Wei, has been placed under investigation.

The Xinhua news agency quoted Beijing fire department blaming pyrotechnics set off to celebrate the end of the Lunar New Year for the fire.