The fire in the eighteenth district of the French capital, the cause of which is unknown, broke out at around 4:30 am (0230 GMT) and took more than 100 firefighters to contain it.
    
The eight victims included two who died after they attempted to escape through windows, according to police. A source close to the investigation said two children were among the victims.
    
Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve, present at the scene, said that in addition to the eight dead, four were in a critical condition. He said it was "too early to determine the causes of this tragedy".
    
Criminal prosecutors have taken over the investigation, suggesting authorities believe the blaze was not an accident.

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