Libyan Ministry Health  announced Monday that 41 people have died as a result of drinking homemade alcohol that contained poisonous methanol. The death toll is expected to rise.The ministry counted 378 cases of poisonous methanol victims. Another statement released by the Directorate of National Security of Tripoli said also on Monday said Tripoli hospitals received 428 poisoned cases 19 of which had died. The 19 dead people in this statement could be also mentioned in the release by the Ministry of Health on the same day. Among the dead are Tunisians and Algerians. Some of the victims were blinded, while others went into comas or suffered kidney failure . The dead range in age from 19 to 50 years old. There are reports of females among the victims. According to the statement by Tripoli security directorate, the first poisoned case that was reported to Tripoli Medical Center occurred at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday 9 March, only to be followed by other case to the center and other hospitals scattered in the city and its suburbs. There are other uncounted for cases that were reported in hospitals outside Tripoli administrative limits, the statement said.There has been no statement by the Prime Minister regarding this disaster yet. The Tripoli security directorate said it has established a five-member committee of police and security officers to investigate the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice.Alcohol is legally banned in Libya since 1969 .
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