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77 Killed in Spanish Train Accident

Spanish officials say at least 77 people have died following a train accident in northern Spain. .

Officials say more than 130 people were injured when the eight-carriage train derailed late Wednesday near a station outside of Santiago de Compostela, on the eve of the city's annual religious festival that attracts tens of thousands of Christian pilgrims from around the world.

Television footage showed smoke rising from the scene, and bodies covered by blankets alongside the tracks next to the twisted metal of the train cars.

The train originated in Madrid and was bound for the northwestern town of Ferrol. The cause of the accident was not immediately clear.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, who was born in Santiago de Compostela, is expected in the city Thursday.

City officials say they have cancelled all ceremonies planned for Thursday, when pilgrims converge on the city to celebrate a festival honoring St. James, the disciple of Jesus whose remains are said to rest in a shrine. The city is the main gathering point for the faithful who make it to the end of the El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route that has drawn Christians since the Middle Ages.

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