Australia : Buddhist temple severely damaged by fire in Melbourne

A Bud­dhist tem­ple has been severe­ly dam­aged by fire in the city of Mel­bourne, Australia.

About 80 fire­fight­ers fought the blaze at Kiuget­su­ji Tem­ple for more than two hours before extin­guish­ing it late Sun­day. As of Mon­day, some of the fires are still being extinguished.

The fire was vis­i­ble from sev­er­al kilo­me­ters away and no one was injured. Deputy Fire Chief Paul Fos­ter said the cause of the fire is still unknown.

Fos­ter told the Aus­tralian Broad­cast­ing Cor­po­ra­tion that the fire­fight­ing was done out of cul­tur­al considerations.

“It is not only a place of wor­ship, but also a gath­er­ing place for local Bud­dhists, and we are always in touch with peo­ple in the area, telling them what we are doing and tak­ing their con­cerns into account. ‚” said Foster.

About 30 res­i­dents were evac­u­at­ed from the area overnight, while oth­ers were told to close their win­dows to avoid the smoke.

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