Kyoto [Japan]: At least 13 people died and 38 others were injured in a suspected arson attack at a popular animation studio in Japan’s Kyoto city on Thursday, according to fire officials.
The Kyoto Fire department confirmed that one person has been killed and 12 others were found with “no vital signs” inside the building, which belonged to the Kyoto Animation, CNN reported.
Police said that a 41-year-old man poured what appeared to be petrol around the studio and set it on fire. The suspect has been taken into custody.
According to Japan’s public broadcaster NHK, eyewitnesses reported the fire at the animation studio at around 10:30 am (local time), saying they heard what it sounded like a blast, after which plumes of smoke was seen billowing out from the building.
About 48 fire engines have been dispatched to the site and operations are underway to douse the blaze and search for people believed to be trapped inside the animation studio.
Based in southern Kyoto prefecture’s Uji city, Kyoto Animation was founded in 1981 and produces animations and publishes anime novels, comics, and books, its website said.