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Sun 12 Jun 2011 06:42 PM

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Kuwait issues ban on German, Spanish veg

Kuwait joins other Gulf states in banning some vegetables as European E.coli death toll rises

Kuwait issues ban on German, Spanish veg
Cucumbers are among the vegetables from Germany and Spain banned by Kuwait. (AFP/Getty Images)

Kuwait said on Sunday that it has banned imports of fresh and frozen vegetables from Germany and Spain as the death toll of a European E.coli outbreak rose to 32.

Mohammad Ghazai Al-Otaibi, head of the food safety committee at Kuwait Municipality, said prohibited vegetables would include spinach, cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, and eggplant.

He added in a statement to Kuwait News Agency that all other imported vegetables would need to have health certificates stating that they are free of the E.coli bacteria.

Kuwait's move follows similar action taken previously by the UAE and Qatar.

The number of people who have died since May 1 from infections with E.coli bacteria has risen to 32, Germany’s Bild am Sonntag said on Sunday.

A total of 4,000 people have become ill with the bacteria, with 759 of those suffering from a potentially fatal kidney complication, known as hemolytic uremic syndrome, the newspaper said.

About 1,000 people fall ill with EHEC on average every year, Germany’s Federal Centre for Health Education said.

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