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Tunisia: 7 dead, scores hospitalised after drinking toxic alcohol

Alcoholic beverages
Alcoholic beverages in an ice bucket, 29 October 2019

Seven people have died and more than 50 were hospitalised after drinking toxic alcohol on Sunday, the first day of the Muslim holiday of Eid Al-Fitr, in the Tunisian province of Kairouan, local media reported.

The victims were between 35 and 60 years old. They drank cologne mixed with methanol, which is highly toxic.

Methanol poisoning can take days to set in.

While some are in intensive care, the rest of the patients are in a stable condition and are being treated for methanol poisoning, the Director of Health in Kairouan Hamdi Hathri said.

According to ABC: “Methanol is the simplest form of alcohol. It is closely related to ethanol, the type of alcohol normally found in beer, wine and spirits – but much more toxic. The potential for its presence in drinks made from home-distilled spirits is a serious health risk.”

READ: Tunisia to reopen mosques, cafes after nearly 3 months

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