In Cape Town, a fire breaks out at the South African Parliament.

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In Cape Town, a fire breaks out at the South African Parliament.

A massive fire broke out early Sunday in Cape Town, South Africa’s seat of parliament, sending a dense column of smoke into the sky and endangering the National Assembly complex.

The fire was thought to have originated in one of the older buildings in the legislative precinct, prompting a security cordon near the cathedral, where anti-apartheid icon Archbishop Desmond Tutu had been buried only hours earlier.

“The roof has caught fire, and the National Assembly building is now on fire,” a spokesman for the city’s emergency services told AFP, asking for assistance.

“The fire is not under control, and there have been reports of cracks in the building’s walls,” he continued.

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