Chinese nationals detained in Egypt were cooking animal genitals not snakes: Official
Ahram Online, , Thursday 26 Mar 2020
Police arrested five Chinese nationals after neighbours complained that they were grilling snakes in their garden


The five Chinese nationals arrested in Cairo Wednesday evening were cooking meals of animals' genitals, not grilled snakes, a veterinary official has said.

Egyptian prosecutors ordered five Chinese nationals be detained Wednesday evening for 24 hours for cooking snakes in their apartment in Cairo’s easternsuburb of New Cairo, according to Al-Ahram Arabic website.

The move by authorities came after police received a report from one of the residents in the area alleging that his Chinese neighbours were grilling snakes intheir garden. Snakes are not traditionally eaten in Egypt.

A team of specialists has been formed to examine whether the seized food was harmful, Sayed Obaid, director of Cairo’s Veterinary Medicine, said in TVcomments late Wednesday.

Photos of the large quantities of the food being prepared for grilling in a garden have gone viral on social media, sparking dozens of memes with some onlineusers sharing views that the Chinese food could be a source of the deadly coronavirus.

Health experts have suggested that coronavirus may have originated in bats in China, where the contagion first emerged, before beingpassed on to humans via an intermediate animal.

Globally, nearly half a million people have been infected with the Covid-19 respiratory disease and more than 21,500 lost their lives.

Egypt has so far registered 456 infections and 21 fatalities.

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