Litochky Ukraine fire
16 old people have died in a fire at a residential home in the Ukrainian village of Litochky wikimapia

At least 16 elderly people are now known to have perished when a deadly blaze tore through a residential complex in the Ukraine village of Litochky 37km (23 miles) north of the country's capital Kiev. One person is missing believed dead and five more hospitalised with burns. Several were rescued from the blaze without injury. The fire took fire crews two hours to bring under control.

The blaze started at 5.25am local time on 29 May, and quickly ripped through the privately owned two-storey building, where 35 people were living on what is thought to have been a temporary basis. Ukraine's emergency services ministry said: "Emergency services units saved 18 people, five of whom have been hospitalised with burns of varying degrees of severity."

According to Sputnik, Russia's state-controlled news service, the missing person has been reported dead, bringing the total of fatalities to 17. The news agency quotes State Emergency Service of Ukraine chief Mykola Chechyotkin telling reporters: "Seventeen people have died, 16 of the dead have already been found."

An investigation into the cause of the tragedy has now been launched. Ukraine's Prime Minister Vladimir Groysman described the fire as a "terrible tragedy that has caused irreparable loss" and offered the government's condolences to the families of the victims.

Two years ago, 42 people died when a fire engulfed the Trade Unions House in the Ukraine port of Odessa during a stand-off between government troops and pro-Russian demonstrators. The inferno took place at the height of clashes between the two sides. The death toll from the continuing unrest is now at least 8,000.

In 2009, 23 old people perished in a fire at a residential home in the north-west Komi region of Russia. In 2004, 14 old people perished when a fire ripped through Rosepark care home in Uddingston, Lanarkshire.