Pak­istan toxic liquor in­ci­dent rises to 39

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

ISLAMABAD:

Thirty-nine peo­ple have now died af­ter drink­ing home-made liquor mixed with af­ter­shave on Christ­mas Eve in cen­tral Pak­istan, of­fi­cials said Fri­day, in­clud­ing two out of the four sus­pects ac­cused of cre­at­ing the toxic brew. Po­lice and hos­pi­tal of­fi­cials added 23 of the 121 peo­ple sick­ened in the in­ci­dent, which hap­pened in the town of Toba Tek Singh, some 340 kilo­me­ters south of Islamabad, are still in hos­pi­tal.

“So far 39 peo­ple have died af­ter con­sum­ing toxic liquor,” se­nior po­lice of­fi­cial Atif Im­ran, who is in­ves­ti­gat­ing the case, told AFP. Most of the dead were Chris­tians. Im­ran added that two of the four sus­pects ac­cused of pre­par­ing the mix had died while the other two were had been charged with mur­der and ter­ror­ism re­lated of­fences. Though le­gal brew­eries ex­ist in Pak­istan, al­co­hol sales and con­sump­tion are banned for Mus­lims and tightly reg­u­lated for mi­nori­ties and for­eign­ers. While wealthy Pak­ista­nis buy for­eign al­co­hol on the black mar­ket at heav­ily in­flated prices, the poor of­ten re­sort to home brews that can con­tain methanol, com­monly used in anti-freeze and fuel. Eleven Chris­tians died in Oc­to­ber af­ter con­sum­ing toxic liquor at a party in Pun­jab prov­ince. In Oc­to­ber 2014 29 drinkers were killed af­ter con­sum­ing methanol-tainted liquor over the Eid pub­lic hol­i­days.— AFP

SIN­GA­PORE: Myan­mar’s For­eign Min­is­ter Aung San Suu Kyi, left, meets with Sin­ga­pore’s Prime Min­is­ter Lee Hsien Loong at the Is­tana or pres­i­den­tial palace. — AP

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