17032015Tue

Last updateTue, 17 Mar 2015 2pm

Report: Disney pulled out of Bangladesh in March. Rana Plaza death toll passes 500

Disney Corporation halted production of its branded merchandise in Bangladesh in March over concerns about labour conditions in the country, weeks before a garment factory collapse that killed more than 500 people.

Executives from the US entertainment giant said the decision to stop sourcing products from Bangladesh was prompted, in part, by a factory fire last November which killed 123 workers.

"We felt this was the most responsible way to manage the challenges associated with our supply chain," Bob Chapek, president of Disney Consumer Products, was quoted as saying.

Meanwhile the death toll from the collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Dhaka last week, has passed 500.

Another 29 bodies were pulled from the rubble of the Rana Plaza building in Savar on Thursday night, bringing the total to 507.

Scores of workers are still unaccounted for in the country's worst industrial actor.

Late on Thursday, Bangladeshi police arrested another engineer in connection with the disaster.

They say Abdur Razzak Khan acted as a consultant for Rana Plaza owner Mohammed Sohel Rana, who is suspected of illegally adding more floors to the building.

Correspondents say the arrest came as a surprise, as Mr Khan was the engineer who had warned that the complex was unsafe.

Bangladeshi media reported that he had been called to inspect the building after it developed cracks the day before the collapse on 24 April.

He appeared on a private TV station saying he had told the owners to evacuate the building because it was not safe, according to the reports.

Two other engineers are also in custody, along with the building's owner Mohammed Sohel Rana, his father Abdul Khalek and four owners of garment factories that occupied the building.

More than 2500 people were also injured in the collapse.

Some 2,437 people have been rescued so far with numerous bodies that were badly damaged or decomposed going unclaimed.

Rescuers say they do not know how many people are still missing as factory owners have not given them precise figures.

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