China Withholds Number of Kids Sickened by Melamine
China has refused to release updated statistics of the total number of children sickened by the melamine-tainted milk scandal in a clear move to censor media coverage of the country's failed dairy industry and promote an image of sound management and control as officials scramble to contain the dire situation.
The health ministry said it had new statistics showing how many babies were believed to have been left ill by the crisis, but did not release the data and gave no indication if or when it would make the latest information public.
"We've not released the latest number of cases because it is not an infectious disease, so it's not absolutely necessary for us to announce it to the public," a health ministry spokesman told AFP.
Previously released figures estimated 53.000 children became ill and 4 babies died from kidney stone complications due to ingesting the melamine tainted products.