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Minamata disease (Japanese) is a neurological syndrome caused by severe mercury poisoning

Updated: May 22, 2021

The Minamata Methylmercury disaster - 50 years on: 2006

The world’s worst mercury disaster with more than 900 people dead, and 2,265 people were certified as having directly suffered from Methylmercury poisoning - now known as Minamata disease.

Minamata disease paralyzes the human central nervous system and causes birth defects. The central government recognized it as a disease caused by pollution in September 1968 “although the symptoms were discovered in 1956”.

July 1997, four decades after horrible cases of Mercury Poisoning made Minamata Bay synonymous with environmental catastrophe, the Japanese regional government declared the fish in the bay to be safe to eat.

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