Fire engulfs Brazil’s 200-year-old national museum

People watch as flames engulf the 200-year-old National Museum of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday.

Credit: Leo Correa

Credit: Leo Correa

People watch as flames engulf the 200-year-old National Museum of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday.

A fire broke out Sunday night at the National Museum of Brazil, which is 200 years old and has more than 20 million items in its collection, the BBC reported.

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Aerial video posted by the Brazilian television station Globo showed high flames and billowing smoke lighting up the night sky in Rio de Janeiro, The New York Times reported.

Brazil's president, Michel Temer, tweeted that it was "a sad day for all Brazilians."

The museum's collection includes Egyptian mummies, Greco-Roman artifacts, dinosaur fossils and the oldest human fossil from the region, called "Luzia," the Times reported.

The fire began around 7:30 p.m. and there were no injuries, the newspaper reported.

The museum was once the residence for the Portuguese royal family, the BBC reported.

The full extent of the damage is unknown, the BBC said.

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