Smoke rises following a ceramics factory explosion in Khartoum, Sudan where 23 people were killed and over 100 injured. Picture: Mohanad Mohamed via Reuters

Johannesburg - Twenty-three people have been killed and more than 130 injured -- some now in critical condition -- after a gas tanker exploded outside a ceramics factory in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, the government reported.

Wednesday’s blast, which took place as the gas tanker was unloading, was so powerful that it blew the tanker into a nearby lot, witnesses and senior civil defence officials reported, according to the Malay Mail.

The factory was completely destroyed, the government said in a statement. The government called on citizens to donate blood for the injured.

 “Preliminary observations indicate a lack of necessary safety measures and equipment at the factory, in addition to random storage of flammable materials,” the government statement said.

The casualties, which included employees of various nationalities, were rushed to hospitals in the capital with some reported to be in critical condition.

African News Agency (ANA)