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24 Feb 2004 description

Khorasan Province Governor-General Hassan Rasuli on 23 February dismissed the possibility of sabotage as the cause of an 18 February railroad disaster in northeastern Iran that left about 300 dead, IRNA reported. State agencies, however, are still investigating the incident (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 23 February 2004), and the casualty figures have not been finalized. Mohammad Maqduri, an official from the Khorasan Province governorate, revised an earlier report of 315 dead downward to 289, according to IRNA. Maqduri added that 460 people were injured.

20 Feb 2004 description

Geneva, 20 February 2004 - A staff member of the Iranian Red Crescent Society was killed in the explosion of a freight train on 18 February near Neyshabur, 165 km south of the city of Mashhad. Ali Akbar Asghari, 51 years old, was the relief and rescue team manager for the Neyshabur branch of the Iranian Red Crescent.

20 Feb 2004 description

A report in the reformist daily "Tehran Etemad" quoted an unidentified railways expert as saying that "as a general principle, carrying explosive materials by railway is not recommended." On 18 February, at least 220 people were killed and hundreds wounded when 51 runaway rail cars loaded with cotton, fertilizer, sulfur, and gasoline exploded at Khayyam, near Nishapur in northeastern Iran.

19 Feb 2004 description

Teheran (dpa) - Over 300 people have now died following Wednesday's train derailment in Iran, the news agency IRNA reported Thursday.

19 Feb 2004 description

On 18 February, a train carrying sulphur, petrol and fertilizer derailed at 4 am and unfortunately caught fire near the city of Neyshabour in Khorasan province, northeastern Iran followed by a huge explosion at 9:37 am which led to the death of over 100 persons and 350 injured. Most of the buildings and homes along the tracks were destroyed.

19 Feb 2004 description

ANKARA , 19 February (IRIN) - The Iranian authorities are not seeking international assistance after a chemical train blast in the northeastern city of Neyshabur killed almost 300 people and injured hundreds more, an official said, adding that the situation was now under control.

19 Feb 2004 description

Teheran (dpa) - The death toll has risen to almost 300 in Iran after Wednesday's freight train derailment and explosion which destroyed several villages in the north-east of the country, the news agency IRNA reported Thursday.

18 Feb 2004 description

SG/SM/9160
The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General was distressed to learn of the casualties and damage caused by the chemical train derailment and explosion in Neyshabur, Iran. He conveys his condolences and deepest sympathy to the Islamic Government of Iran and to the victims of the disaster.

The United Nations stands ready to assist those affected by the tragedy.

18 Feb 2004 description

Ref: OCHA/GVA - 0024
OCHA Situation Report No. 1
Iran - Chemical Train Derailment and Explosion

18 Feb 2004 description
report UN News Service

Reacting to the news of today's deadly train accident in Iran, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan pledged the world body's help in mitigating the disaster.