At least 24 students and teachers have died in a fire at a school in Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur.

The fire at the Tahfiz darul Quran Ittifaqiyah broke out this morning.

The victims are thought to been trapped in their dormitory as the windows were barred with metal grilles.

Initial counts put the death toll at 25, but police later revised that down by one.

They said the dead were 22 students – all boys between the age of 13 and 17 – and two staff members.

A number of students were also reported to have been taken to hospital, some suffering from smoke inhalation.

Police were still investigating what caused the fire but that it likely was caused by short circuit or a lit mosquito repellent coil.

Prime Minister Najib Razak has tweeted his sympathies to those affected while a government minister said the incident should be quickly investigated “so that we will be able to prevent future disasters”.

Malaysian authorities have raised concerns about safety measures at unregulated private religious schools.

Local media report there have been more than 200 fires at such schools since 2015.