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  HOME | World (Click here for more)

Fire Destroys House Where Mata Hari Was Born

BRUSSELS Ė A fire in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden killed at least one person and destroyed the house where legendary World War I spy Mata Hari was born in 1876, media reports said Sunday.

At least 15 shops and apartments were damaged by the fire, which started in a clothing store on Saturday in Leeuwarden, the capital of the province of Friesland, the DutchNews newspaper reported.

Dozens of people had to be evacuated due to the fire, which killed a 24-year-old man who lived in one of the apartments.

The fire was not brought under control until early Sunday.

The victim is believed to be the person who called the fire department, but firefighters were unable to save the man, the Nos television network reported.

The birthplace of Mata Hari, whose real name was Margaretha Geertruida Zelle, was one of the buildings destroyed by the blaze.

Dozens of photographs, Mata Hariís first school report card and other items were destroyed in the fire, Leeuwarden councilman Wyb Feddeman, who owned a beauty salon in the building that bore the infamous spyís name, said.

The exotic dancer was accused of spying for Germany and shot by French soldiers in 1917.


 

 

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