China officials take blame for deadly fire at illegal orphanage
BEIJING (AP) - A local Chinese government admitted today that it had tolerated the existence of an illegally run orphanage where six children and one young adult died in a house fire.
The Lankao county government in central China's Henan province said Ms Yuan Lihai, operator of the shelter, illegally took in and cared for 18 abandoned children and young adults at her home but that the government turned a blind eye to it in consideration of her "kind-hearted acts," reported the state-run People's Daily.
"There is a direct relationship between today's situation and the fact that some related government departments failed to enforce supervision and loosened management on purpose," deputy county governor Wu Changsheng said at a press conference today.
"They should shoulder responsibility, and that's a loophole in our work." Mr Wu also told reporters that the local government had provided some assistance to Ms Yuan to help her care for the children.