Via Deutsche Welle

A fire overnight destroyed the monkey sanctuary at the Krefeld Zoo, killing all the animals inside, the zoo said in a statement on Facebook.

“Our worst fears have become reality,” the zoo said. “There are no surviving animals in the money sanctuary.”

More than 30 animals were killed. A nearby gorilla garden was undamaged.

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Firefighters stand outside the monkey sanctuary

Firefighters spent hours fighting the fire

‘Still in shock’

The zoo said it was thankful for the “numerous offers of help” but that it wasn’t clear yet where they need assistance.

“We are still in shock and cannot yet say exactly if and where help is needed.”

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Firegithers stand outside the burned-out shell of the monkey sanctuary

No animals survived the fire, according the zoo

Searching for the cause

Although authorities have yet to determine the cause, local media reported that it could have been caused by fireworks.

However, a police official told Berlin-based Bild newspaper that the cause may have been sky lanterns, which have been banned in North Rhine-Westphalia since 2009.

Germany is the largest importer of fireworks in the EU. Each year on New Year’s Eve, hundreds of thousands of firework enthusiasts set off light explosives across the country.

The monkey house was created in 1975 and eventually became the home of orangutans, chimpanzees and gorillas, among other animals.

Read more: Germany slammed over rise in animal testing

ls/mm (dpa, AFP)

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