Namibia
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Suspected gas leak leaves 16 dead

A suspect nitrate oxide gas leak in South Africa has led to the deaths of 16 people, local officials say.

The victims died from gas inhalation at an informal settlement at Boksburg, east of Johannesburg.

Wednesday’s leak has been linked to illegal gold mining in the area.

Nitrate oxide gas is often used by illegal gold miners, known locally as ‘zama zamas’, to extract gold from soil stolen from abandoned mineshafts.

One of the gas cylinders was found leaking at Boksburg’s densely populated Angelo shanty town.

The victims were found within a 100m radius of the scene.

No one was taken to hospital, emergency service officials have told the BBC, and they fear more bodies could be found as search and rescue teams continue their work.

This tragedy comes just six months after a gas tanker explosion on Christmas eve claimed 41 lives at the same town. – BBC

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