British police launch probe after children die in flat blast

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Police in Britain launched a criminal investigation on Wednesday into the deaths of three young children in an explosion at a block of flats in Edinburgh, Scotland.

The children were found after the blast in the Scottish capital at around 3:00 pm (1400 GMT), and a woman believed to be their mother was taken to hospital after witnesses saw her jump from the balcony of the third-floor flat.

It was initially thought the youngsters -- two boys and a girl -- were killed by a gas blast but Edinburgh police said there was no fault with the supply.

"A criminal investigation is currently under way and nothing more can be said at this time into the circumstances which led to their deaths," said a police spokesman.

The details of the victims would not be released until post-mortem examinations had been carried out, said police.

© 2010 AFP

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