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Two children among those rescued from collapsed building in Georgia

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By Euronews
Emergency services were working to free anyone trapped under the rubble.
Emergency services were working to free anyone trapped under the rubble.   -   Copyright  Euronews Georgia

Authorities in Georgia have launched a rescue operation after part of a residential building collapsed.

The seven-story building came down in the centre of the city of Batumi on the Black Sea on Friday, according to the country's Interior Ministry.

There are no known casualties so far but dozens of rescuers were working at the scene.

Euronews Georgia and other national media have reported that two children --including a baby -- have so far been pulled alive from the rubble.

The Interior Ministry later confirmed that "a small child" was safely pulled out of one of the damaged cars in the rubble.

"Between 10 and 15 people are still under the ruins, two of whom we have been able to contact," Interior Minister Vajtang Gomelauri told a news conference.

Several parked cars nearby could be seen covered in debris from the collapse.

The cause of the collapse is still unknown, but residents of adjacent houses are being evacuated as a precaution as a crane works at the site.

The Interior Ministry added in a statement that it has sent additional firefighters, rescuers, and special equipment to Batumi.

"According to initial reports, the entrance of the residential building collapsed," the ministry said.

"At the moment, the area is being cleared of rubble and active search and rescue operations are underway," it added

"An investigation has been launched into the destruction, the information about the injured is being clarified."

Additional sources • EFE