Nine die as China house collapses in cyanide

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BEIJING, Sept 28 (Reuters) A house built on top of an abandoned pool of cyanide collapsed in a gold-mining area of central China, killing nine people, Xinhua news agency said today.

Villagers from Yangping in the city of Lingbao, Henan province, had yesterday gathered in the house to discuss funeral arrangements for a young man who was found dead there at daybreak, a spokesman with the Lingbao city government told Xinhua.

The young man had quarrelled with his parents on Wednesday and had run away from home to spend the night alone in the uninhabited house.

Police suspected he had been poisoned by the cyanide.

''As the crowd flocked in at the invitation of (the man's) parents, the floor of the house, made of a single wooden board over the pond, gave way and 16 people fell into the 2-metre-deep chemical pool,'' Xinhua said.

''The house itself also collapsed.'' Seven people were saved and sent to local hospitals. Nine died from poisoning or injuries, Xinhua said.

Cyanide pools are used to extract gold from ore.

REUTERS SG KN1434

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