Brazil is mourning the loss of its 200-year-old National Museum which had 20m artifacts, including Egyptian mummies, archaeological pottery and dinosaur fossils.
The cause of the fire, which broke out on Sunday night when the museum was closed to visitors, is not yet known.
This #Rio Museum fire stinks to high heavens…So we're supposed to believe that a 200 year old museum just happened to go up in flames with like a huge chunk of Brazil's history without any foul play?Alright then… pic.twitter.com/9flDmPeaa2
— Muthoni Kimathi (@muthonikimathi) September 3, 2018
Calling it “a sad day for all Brazilians”, Brazil’s president Michel Temer said: ‘Two hundred years of work, investigation and knowledge have been lost. The value of our history cannot be measured by the damage to the building.’
Luiz Duarte, vice director of the museum, told local media that the institution had been neglected by successive federal governments, and that a £4m financing plan announced in June included, ironically, a plan to install modern fire protection equipment.
BRAZIL MUSEUM FIRE: Fire has gutted the #NationalMuseumofBrazil in #RiodeJaneiro. Most of the 20 million items it contained including the oldest human remains ever found in the Americas are believed to have been destroyed. No injuries reported #News #braziljs #newterm #rio #3Sep pic.twitter.com/ofWJkCFU02
— Nelson Toro (@Nelsonpuntocom) September 3, 2018
— Natural History Museum⁷ (@NHM_London) September 3, 2018