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The burning of the modular hospital in Tetovo, suspended sentence for the two directors

The burning of the modular hospital in Tetovo, suspended sentence for the two

The Basic Court in Tetovo has sentenced the two directors of the hospital in Tetovo to 1 and a half years of conditional imprisonment in connection with the death of 14 people from a fire that broke out in the modular facility on September 8, 2021.

The director of the hospital, Florin Besimi, and the former economic director, Artan Etemi, will not serve the sentence if they do not repeat the offense within three years.

The victims of this tragedy were people affected by the disease COVID-19 and were being treated in the modular facility near the Tetova hospital.

The fire caused by the electric cable had broken out in the late hours of September 8. The fire caused the explosion of oxygen cylinders that were used to treat the sick.

The jury found them guilty for not placing information signs in the areas of the hospital facility and fire extinguishing equipment.

"The defendants have not installed prescribed means for fire protection and in this way have caused danger to the life and body of people and patients sick with COVID-19. They have not acted according to the measures and activities of the loan agreement with the World Bank. Although they were obliged to have fire-fighting equipment, on the day the modular hospital was put into use, until the moment of the fire, they did not have adequate means of fire protection", stated the president of the court, Jordan Velkovski.

Meanwhile, the court has released the doctor Boban Vučevski, who was charged with the criminal offense of "disrespecting health rules during the epidemic".

According to the defense, the accused are not guilty because they did not contribute to the tragedy, that's why they asked for their release at the court hearing.

Meanwhile, for this tragedy, the Tetova hospital has been fined 1 million denars (15,000 euros) for "danger to general safety and failure to act according to health regulations during the epidemic".

Experts from Germany also helped in clarifying the causes of the fire, who concluded that the cause of the fire was a short circuit in an extension cable.

The government of North Macedonia, a few days after the event, also requested the help of the European Union and NATO to investigate the causes of the fire.

Regarding this serious event, which caused numerous reactions and protests, on September 10, 2021, the Minister of Health, Venko Filipçe, resigned./REL

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