Officials in Brazil have blamed lack of funding for a huge fire that has ravaged the country’s National Museum.

One of the largest anthropology and natural history collections in the Americas was almost totally destroyed in yesterday’s fire in Rio de Janeiro.

There had been complaints about the dilapidated state of the museum.

“We never had adequate support,” its deputy director said after the fire.

According to BBC News, Presidential candidate Marina Silva also criticised lack of investment.

The fire started yesterday evening, after the building – a 19th Century former royal palace – closed for the day. The cause is not known.

No injuries have been reported but most of the 20 million items the museum contained, including the oldest human remains ever found in the Americas, went up in flames.

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