Source: AAP | Published: Friday June 23

Beazley expresses grief at deaths
Source: AAP | Published: Friday June 23, 10:46 AM

The fire at a Queensland backpackers hostel was a shocking event that touched the heart of every parent, Opposition Leader Kim Beazley said today.

At least 15 people were feared dead and several more were missing after the overnight fire at the backpackers hostel, 250 kilometres north of Brisbane.

Police said there were 86 people staying at the Palace Backpackers hostel, mostly young overseas backpackers.

Mr Beazley said he felt deep sympathy for the families of the young victims.

"Can I express to the parents of and the families of all the young folk who have lost their lives in this extraordinary and appalling accident the deepest sympathy of the Opposition and I am sure the Australian people," he told journalists.

"This is a horrible story emerging here, and no doubt the Queensland government will investigate the circumstances thoroughly, but that's for the future.

"What there is for today is terrible grieving in many households.

"This is a shocking event, an absolutely shocking event, and it touches the hearts of every parent."