Muscat: "The cause of the blaze has not been determined yet. However, I rule out the possibility that the fire was set on purpose. I do not think it was an act of sabotage," the Iranian owner of the Emirates Gift Market, Salman Ghaedi, has said.
The fire broke out at 2:28pm at his store.
"I was sleeping in my room which is right above the store and suddenly I heard a very loud sound, like the sound of an explosion. It lasted for around 10 seconds. Then I was informed that the store had caught fire," Ghaedi said.
"In 30 seconds, I reached the store and saw smoke coming out of the shop. We evacuated the people who were inside the store. There was nothing else that I could do. I just watched the shop burning."
Ghaedi said that the building comprises a basement, a ground floor, a floor above the ground floor and four residential storeys.
"The basement, the ground floor, and the floor above it all belong to our shop and are related," he said.
"The fire did start at our shop, but I do not know from which floor it erupted."
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