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An official with the Environment Ministry said 11 policemen had died. However, the governor of Wasit province — where the poisoning took place — denied any deaths, though he said some of the victims were in critical condition. There was no immediate explanation for the contradictory reports.
Between 600-700 policemen were affected to varying degrees, and 11 who had the heaviest amount of the food had died, Atwan told AP.
Some of the soldiers collapsed as soon as they stood up from them meal, others fell "one after the other" as they headed out to the yard in the base to line up in formation, Atwan said.
Originally posted by WyrdeOne
That doesn't sound like food poisoning, or bacteria in the water...
Iraqi authorities have arrested the man in charge of the mess hall in Numaniya, where hundreds of Iraqi police fell ill after eating their evening meal on Sunday, breaking their daily Ramadan fast.
Initial lab test results of the food and water suggest it was negligence by the contractor, not an attack, Interior Ministry spokesman Brig. General Abdul Karim Khalaf said.
The contractor was arrested and the cooks are being interrogated, he said.
Despite earlier reports, Khalaf said there were no deaths, and that 450 police were sickened at the mess hall about 75 miles (120 km) south of Baghdad.