Death toll from alcohol poisoning incident in Russia rises to 24 -RIA

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MOSCOW – The death toll from a mass poisoning linked to illegal alcohol in central Russia has risen to 24, the RIA news agency reported on Thursday, in the second such incident this month.

Russia’s Investigative Committee said on Saturday that 18 people who drank liquor containing methanol, a poisonous alcohol usually used for industrial purposes, had died from alcohol poisoning in the city of Yekaterinburg, about 1,450 km (900 miles) east of Moscow.

“As of today 24 people (have died),” RIA cited a local prosecutor as saying on Thursday.

The probe in Yekaterinburg found that victims had purchased alcohol from a group of people, two of whom were detained, the investigative committee said.

The incident follows the opening of an inquiry earlier in October after 34 people died of alcohol poisoning in southwest Russia.

Cases of alcohol-related mass poisonings have shocked the country in the past. In 2016, 77 people died in Siberia from drinking bath oil laced with methylated spirit.

(Reporting by Alexander Marrow and Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; Editing by Giles Elgood)