A mass poisoning at a China kindergarten killed two students and 30 more were sickened, officials said Friday, according to The Associated Press.
Investigators identified the toxic substance as a powerful rat poison, but did not yet know how it had been ingested Wednesday in the kindergarten in Yunnan province's rural Qiubei county, according to a statement from the provincial government.
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Food served at the school, the Jiajia Kindergarten, has been tested and found to be safe, the statement said. The particular type of poison was outlawed years ago as a threat to human health, but remains in circulation.
State broadcaster CCTV said that the school began accepting students last year despite not being fully licensed, a common problem in China's vast and largely impoverished hinterland.
Apart from the victims, aged 4 and 5, another six children remained hospitalized while the others had been released and returned home.
Whether the poisoning was accidental or intentional wasn't clear.
Chinese schools have seen a series of mass stabbings and other attacks by mentally disturbed people or those bearing grudges, and there have been incidents of school staff administering medication without authorization.
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