Rescue workers searched through the night for survivors after a high-rise building under construction in the Azerbaijani capital Baku collapsed, killing at least two people and leaving up to 11 trapped under the rubble.
Emergency ministry spokesman Tural Museyibov told AFP two bodies had been recovered from the rubble. Two injured men were pulled from the debris by rescue workers and treated in hospital, he added. Local news agencies reported that one of the men was severely injured in the collapse that happened yesterday while the other was released after being treated for light injuries.
Museyibov had said earlier that seven people had escaped while 15 were still trapped in the rubble. Later he said that there might only be five people unaccounted for.
Recuers said that one of those trapped managed to get a telephone call through, saying that three more workers were with him, though in unknown condition, the Interfax news agency reported overnight.
Officials said buildig violations were the most likely the cause of the accident and that two representatives of the construction company working on the builing had been detained.
Teams of rescuers worked to clear the rubble and search for survivors. Heavy equipment and sniffer dogs were brought to the site to assist in the search. Police and soldiers cordoned off the area, preventing dozens of onlookers from approaching the site.
Distraught friends and relatives of those who had been working inside gathered near where the building had stood, hoping for news.