More than 700 people have died in Iran after ingesting toxic methanol, erroneously believing in rumours that it can cure the new coronavirus, Al Jazeera reported.
According to Iranian health authorities, alcohol poisoning killed 728 Iranians between February 20 and April 7. Last year there were only 66 deaths from alcohol poisoning.
"People think that alcohol causes immunity to corona, while drinking alcohol does not eliminate corona in the body," a medical expert was quoted as saying by Tasnim News Agency.
Iranian health ministry spokesman, Kianoush Jahanpour, said 5,011 people had been poisoned from methanol alcohol, adding that some 90 people have lost their eyesight or are suffering eye damage from the alcohol poisoning.
According to the rules laid out by Iranian Government, manufacturers of toxic methanol are required to add an artificial colour to their products so the public can differentiate it from ethanol.
The production of ethanol, widely used in production of alcoholic beverages, is illegal in Iran as consumption of alcohol is prohibited under strict Islamic law.
Iran has been faceing one of the worst outbreaks in the Middle East with 5,806 deaths and 91,000 cases
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