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Homemade alcohol in Libya kills dozens, sickens hundreds

- The Washington Times - Monday, March 11, 2013

Since Saturday, 38 have died and hundreds more are ill from drinking homemade alcohol in Tripoli, the nation's health minister said.

"The number of deaths due to the consumption of homemade alcohol has grown, with 22 new cases bringing the total to 38 ... [and] the number of people poisoned has reached 378," said Amar Mohamed Amar, in an Agence France-Presse report.

The deaths have all occurred since Saturday.

The Global Mail reports that Tripoli's medical chief said preliminary tests showed the alcohol contained methanol.

Health problems from the poisoned concoction include blindness, kidney failure and seizures — not to mention death. Those between the ages of 19 and 50 are believed to have consumed the toxic booze, The Global Mail reports.

Alcohol is banned in Libya, but black market sales continue to thrive.

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