Tripoli, 13 March 2103:
There is confusion about the number of victims in the poison alcohol scandal in Tripoli. According to a . . .[restrict]spokesman from the Heath Ministry today, Wednesday, there have now been 69 deaths, nine up from the figure given in a press briefing by Health Minister Noureddine Doghman yesterday. However, late yesterday evening, Colonel Mahmoud Sharif, Director of Public Security in Tripoli, said there had been 79 deaths since the first were reported last Thursday.
The difference is though to be due to the fact that some victims died at home while the Health Ministry’s figures refers to hospital deaths.
Patients were still arriving at hospital today, said the spokesman.
The total number of victims was put this morning at 901.
Meanwhile, according to the health ministry spokesman, a Tunisian medical team arrived today to help with the disaster, the worst case ever in the country of alcohol poisoning. Several of the victims have already been sent to Tunisia for treatment for kidney failure.
Many of the dead are young, the youngest being reported as 14 years old. Among the dead was the son of the neighbour of a Libya Herald staff member. He was aged just 17.
The large number of young victims has brought a powerful condemnation from the Ministry of Youth and Sports calling it “a heinous and deliberate crime” and demanding the perpetrators be arrested and severely punished. [/restrict]