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Last Updated: Friday, 10 November 2006, 07:57 GMT
'Toxic' pigs cull in Ivory Coast
Pig cull in Ivory Coast
The culled pigs were being raised near deadly toxic waste dumps
Ivory Coast has culled more than 450 pigs suspected of being contaminated by toxic waste, officials have said.

The pigs were being raised near deadly oil slops that had been dumped illegally in the main city, Abidjan.

The toxic waste was blamed for the deaths of 10 people in Ivory Coast and for making thousands of people sick.

Ivory Coast has begun an inquiry into the waste, shipped by a Dutch firm. The toxic sludge is being removed to France for treatment.

A government official said the cull was carried out to prevent contamination of the food chain and the pigs had been incinerated.

"In total 455 pigs showed signs of toxic poisoning and were slaughtered by the authorities," said Louise Achi, from the Ministry of Livestock Production.

She said the next priority was to catch and incinerate any fish contaminated off the coast near Abidjan.

Authorities are hunting for one farmer who moved his pigs to avoid the cull.

Officials urged Ivorians to be "doubly vigilant" and only to consume meat from authorised slaughterhouses.

Trafigura, the firm which transported the waste to Ivory Coast, denies responsibility, saying it paid a local company to dispose of the waste properly.

The scandal led to the resignation of the entire government.


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