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Toxic vinegar kills at least eleven in Xinjiang province

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Eleven people in China have died and about 140 have fallen ill after consuming contaminated vinegar. The official China News Agency Xinhua said that villagers in the region of Xinjiang, home to China's muslim Uighur minority, reported feeling sick after breaking the daily fast for the holy month of Ramadan on Friday.

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An initial probe found the victims had consumed vinegar from plastic containers that used to contain ant-ifreeze fluid.

But police are yet to confirm the source of the poisoning.

Children as young as six were among the dead and one person remained in a critical condition in hospital, Xinhua added.

In another tainted products scandal, Beijing Tongrentang, a company that became famous for selling Chinese medicines, said Monday it had recalled its birds' nest products after they were found to contain excessive levels of a cancer-causing chemical.

Last week, Chinese authorities intensified checks on birds' nest products after official investigations found excessive levels of sodium nitrite, which can cause cancer.

Contaminated product scares are common in China.

In a recent crackdown on illegal food additives, launched after a wave of contamination scandals, authorities arrested around 2,000 people and closed nearly 5,000 businesses.

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