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Paris prosecutor finds no evidence of arson in Notre Dame fire 

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A cigarette butt or faulty wiring may be too blame, say investigators

The chief prosecutor of Paris announced that a preliminary investigation into the cause of the April 15 fire that ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral has found no evidence that the fire was deliberately set.

“The investigations carried out to this date have not yet been able to determine the causes of the fire,”I Remy Heitz, chief prosecutor of Paris, said in a statement.

Heitz added that “deeper investigation” would be undertaken to determine whether the fire was caused by negligence, reported the BBC.

Possible causes of the fire being considered are a “badly stubbed out cigarette” and faulty electrical wiring, according to the report.

After the fire, French President Emmanuel Macron pledged to restore the 850-year old church within five years.

Before restoration can begin, “essential” work needs to be done to secure the building, the Notre Dame Foundation told the AFP.

As a first step, Paris authorities announced on Monday that they will soon begin dismantling the scaffolding that surrounded the church when the fire started. 

“One of the most complex aspects of the work at the moment is removing the scaffolding, which includes 50,000 tubes which reached over 800 degrees Celsius” during the fire, Notre Dame Foundation head Christophe-Charles Rousselot told AFP.

On Saturday, June 16 Notre Dame Cathedral celebrated its first Mass since the fire. The Mass was held in an undamaged side chapel and attended by about 30 people, all of whom were required to wear hard hats, including the priests.

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