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Firefighters were able to contain the fire by 8 a.m. Friday. The Red Cross is helping residents who were evacuated from their apartments.
Luis Efaki, a Sudanese refugee attending Winona State University, was one of the six people evacuated from the upstairs apartments.
"I feel very sad and at the very same time I'm happy that I'm alive," he said.
The curious faces in the crowd all seemed to have the same questions: Why? How? Is anyone to blame?
Because the fire began in an Islamic center, investigators were asked repeatedly about arson. The state fire marshal is on the scene, along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to investigate the ignition point and cause of the fire.