Iranian asylum seeker dies from self-immolation in Amsterdam

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An Iranian asylum seeker died Thursday, a day after he set himself alight in central Amsterdam, police said.

A police statement said the 36-year-old Iranian, who was rushed to hospital with severe burns after torching himself on Amsterdam's main square Wednesday, died early Thursday.

Police initially said the victim's asylum request had been turned down but they later indicated that Iranian had appealed the decision and that the case was still under consideration.

Witnesses quoted by Dutch media said the man had a row with a group of Britons and used a lighter to set fire to his clothes which he had apparently doused with a flammable liquid.

He stood motionless and silent as bystanders and shopkeepers used coats and buckets of water to extinguish his flaming body.

There was no immediate explanation for his act and police said an investigation was under way.

© 2011 AFP

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