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Brother and sister, 4, die in house fire

From Chris Kokenes and Haley Draznin, CNN
updated 9:44 PM EDT, Sun April 20, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Siblings died in blaze that broke out around midnight Saturday, fire official says
  • Five people were rescued from the fire, New York City fire department spokesman says
  • One 4-year-old girl was taken to a hospital, where she is in stable condition
  • Fire official say the fire was accidental, the result of "child involvement with fire play"

(CNN) -- A house fire in Queens that killed two 4-year-old siblings Sunday was a result of a child or children playing with fire, a Fire Department of New York spokesman said.

The early morning fire was ruled accidental, the result of "child involvement with fire play," and the fire department was still investigating which occupants were involved in playing with the fire, according to department spokesman Khalid Baylor.

Five people were rescued from the blaze, Baylor said.

The fire began in the basement, officials said.

Aniya Tinglin and her brother Jai'Launi, both 4, were taken to St. John's Episcopal Hospital, where they died, according to the authorities.

Another 4-year-old girl was taken to the same hospital and is in stable condition, said Baylor.

The two children who died were half-siblings who shared a father, and the girl who survived was Jai'Launi's twin sister, CNN affiliate WABC reported.

A 55-year-old woman and a 63-year-old man were taken to two area hospitals, where they are listed in critical but stable condition.

Barbara Smith, a friend of the family, spoke with WABC on Sunday morning and said the family is from Jamaica and that the children were visiting.

"I was shocked. Shocked and frightened. Because it could happen to anyone," said Smith.

CNN's Morgan Winsor contributed to this report.

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