Mongolia's capital on Tuesday banned the sale of alcohol after the death of five people in an alcohol poisoning case.
A preliminary autopsy of five people who died Monday after drinking vodka showed signs of alcohol poisoning, said Batbayasgalan Jantsan, deputy mayor of Ulan Bator.
Sales of alcohol will be banned until Jan. 20 while the authorities conduct a thorough inspection of liquor shops in the city, he said.
The investigation remains ongoing.
Police in Ulan Bator have confiscated 3,363 bottles vodka suspected to be illegal. A vodka distillery named "Munkhjin-Od" was also suspended in connection with the case.
Official figures show 2,959 shops and stores sell alcohol in the Mongolian capital. Taxes from sales and production of vodka contribute significantly to government revenues.
Binge drinking is rampant in the landlocked nation of three million people and a main cause for violent crimes there.
Illegal distilleries and small businesses produce and sell cheap and low quality vodka and alcohol products to cater to poor people who often can't afford to buy much more expensive well-established vodka brands. Endi
Source:Xinhua News Agency