Poison in beans – level 3
Authorities in Western Afghanistan have been investigating whether 100 boys hospitalised after eating food in a school in Herat were poisoned. A spokesman for the Herat Regional Hospital, Mohammad Rafiq Shirzai, said the students from Fateh High School fell unconscious after eating beans sold by a vendor in front of the school.
Herat police chief, Abdul Jabbar Rosie, said the boys, aged between10 to 14, were told the beans would help them pass their examinations. The vendor has been arrested and investigators suspected the food may have been deliberately tainted.
Taliban insurgents have poisoned Afghan police and army soldiers before, as they fight to topple the US-backed government, but periodic reports of poison attacks on schools have mostly turned out to be the result of accidental food poisoning or even mass hysteria.
Difficult words: authorities (people in a position of power), whether (if), unconscious (unable to move or communicate – to look asleep), vendor (a person who sells something), deliberately (on purpose), taint (to make something bad), insurgent (a person fighting against a government), topple (to destroy).
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