Afula Poisonings Under Investigation

A 21-year-old woman died Sunday and 19 other people were hospitalized as police in northern Israel investigated mysterious poisonings at a disposable diaper factory in Afula.

The police said Monday they had not ruled out sabotage for “nationalistic motives” as a possible cause, an oblique reference to the Palestinian uprising.

A spokesman for the Afula Valley Hospital said factory employees were admitted Sunday complaining of severe stomach cramps, headaches and dizziness about two hours after they had lunch at the factory cafeteria.

The kitchen was ordered closed and food and water samples were taken for analysis. Blood was taken from the patients for testing.

Of the 19 who were hospitalized, one 19-year-old patient remained unconscious in the intensive-care unit Sunday night. The others were released.

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