Food Poisoning Sends Soldiers To Hospital In Western Turkey

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More than 700 soldiers have fallen sick in a mass outbreak of food poisoning at a military barracks in the western Turkish province of Manisa.

Manisa Chief Prosecutor Akif Celahattain Simsek announced in a statement on Sunday that none of the soldiers are displaying life-threatening conditions after 731 troopers at the Manisa First Infantry Training Brigade Command complained about nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

They were rushed to hospital with stomach pains and dizziness.

The soldiers at the barracks had eaten a meal of soup, rice, chicken and yogurt for Iftar, a meal with which Muslims break their dawn-to-dusk fasting during the holy month of Ramadan.

Police have detained 21 employees, including executives, of the catering company that provides food to the military compound in connection with the incident.

This is the second time in less than a month that soldiers at the Manisa First Infantry Training Brigade Command have been struck by food poisoning.

One soldier died in the May food poisoning incident, which was caused by salmonella bacteria.

Local opposition lawmaker Tur Yildiz Bicer posted pictures on Twitter of soldiers slumped on benches in the hospital, and others on a drip.

Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik visited the sick soldiers in hospital overnight, saying they were all set to make a full recovery.

“We don’t see a significant problem; just some of our soldiers are being kept in for observation. No one is in intensive care or has their life in danger,” he pointed out.

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