Fire (illustration)
Fire (illustration)Istock

Eleven newborn infants were killed in a fire which broke out in a hospital neonatal ward in Senegal, President Macky Sall announced Wednesday.

"To their mothers and families, I express my deepest sympathy," Sall wrote in Twitter.

The fire occurred at Abdoul Aziz Sy Dabakh Hospital in the town of Tivaouane, a relatively new hospital.

Tivaouane Mayor Demba Diop said that the fire was caused by an electrical short circuit. He said that the fire spread quickly, and only three babies could be rescued.

Senegal has declared three days of national mourning and ordered flags lowered to half-mast.

Senegalese citizens on social media have called for an investigation into the country's health system after a series of recent tragedies at hospitals in which infants have lost their lives.