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Karamay or Kelamayi is a prefecture-level city in the north of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, People's Republic of China. The name of the city comes from the Uyghur language, and means "black oil", referring to the oil fields near the city.Karamay was the site of one of the worst disasters in modern Chinese history, the 12-08 incident, when 324 people, 288 of them school children, lost their lives in a cinema fire on 8 December 1994.HistoryTheatre fire in 1994On December 8, 1994, a fire broke out in Friendship Theatre, Karamay, which caused the death of 325 people including 288 school children, according to official figures. Many teachers were killed while trying to protect and evacuate their students from the building, which lacked adequate safety features. A show was being organized at that moment for a number of local government officials, who managed to escape ahead of the others on spotting the fire, and were afterwards charged with neglecting their duty and received prison sentences of up to 5 years.SubdivisionsKaramay City has jurisdiction over 4 districts (区 qu). They are not contiguous as Dushanzi District is located south of the Lanxin Railway and forms an exclave, separated from the rest of Karamay City by Kuytun City. Together with Kuytun City, Karamay City forms an enclave surrounded on all sides by Tacheng Prefecture.GeographyKaramay is located in the northwest of the Dzungarian basin, with an average elevation of. Its administrative area ranges in latitude from 44° 07' to 46° 08' N and in longitude from 80° 44' to 86° 01' E, and has a maximal 240km north-south extent and reaches 110km in east-west width. It borders Hoboksar Mongol Autonomous County to the northeast, Shawan County to the southeast, Toli County and Wusu to the west, and Kuytun to the south.
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