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Human waste turned up in a consignment of Coca-Cola cans at one of the companys factories in Ireland

The soft drinks giant said it impounded all the affected cans and that the contamination did not affect any products that were on sale

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Coca Cola, VOA

London, March 29, 2017: Coca-Cola has called in police to investigate after human waste turned up in a consignment of its drink cans at one of the companys factories in Northern Ireland.

Police officials confirmed on Tuesday that they have opened an inquiry into how faeces ended up in the cans at the Hellenic Bottling Company factory in Lisburn, Co Antrim, reported the Guardian.

Coca-Cola suspended night-time processing last week at the plant when machines became clogged.

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The soft drinks giant said it impounded all the affected cans and that the contamination did not affect any products that were on sale.

According to the Belfast Telegraph, factory workers on the night shift at the plant in Lisburn last week were left horrified when they made the discovery inside a number of cans on the production line.

“It was absolutely horrible, and the machines had to be turned off for about 15 hours to be cleaned,” a worker told the paper, adding “it was unusual because normally the cans come from somewhere else in the UK, but this time they apparently came from Germany”.

“The rumour is that some poor immigrants could have made that long journey in the lorry and that in their desperation were forced to use the cans instead of a toilet,” according to the report.

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In a statement, the company told the newspaper: “Coca-Cola takes the safety and quality of our products extremely seriously.

“We are aware of an incident involving empty cans at our plant in Knockmore Hill, Lisburn. We are treating this matter extremely seriously and are conducting a thorough investigation in co-operation with the police.

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“The problem was identified immediately through our robust quality procedures and all of the product from the affected production was immediately impounded and will not be sold. This is an isolated incident and does not affect any products currently on sale.”

The Food Standards Agency said none of the cans contaminated with faeces had reached the market in Northern Ireland. It added: “The incident is subject to an investigation by the PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland) and the environmental health unit of Lisburn and Castlereagh city council.” (IANS)

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Belfast Demands Recognition of Same-Sex Marriage in Northern Ireland

“We pay our taxes, we are governed by the same laws, why should we not be afforded the same rights in marriage, says UK citizens

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same-sex marriage
A mural featuring journalist Lyra McKee, who was killed in April, allegedly by republican paramilitaries, is pictured in central Belfast, May 7, 2019. On Saturday, McKee's partner marched for same-sex marriage rights. VOA

Thousands of people marched through Belfast Saturday to demand the recognition of same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland, the only region of the United Kingdom where it does not have legal status.

Attempts to legislate for same-sex marriage have been blocked by the Democratic Unionist Party, a key ally of British Prime Minister Theresa May, despite opinion polls in recent years showing most in the region are in favor.

Sara Canning, the partner of journalist and LGBT rights campaigner Lyra McKee who was killed in April, led the march alongside a number of gay and lesbian couples. Canning said that she and McKee had been planning to marry.

same-sex marriage
“We pay our taxes, we are governed by the same laws, why should we not be afforded the same rights in marriage”, says UK. VOA

“We pay our taxes, we are governed by the same laws, why should we not be afforded the same rights in marriage” as the rest of the United Kingdom, said Canning, who was wearing a “Love Equality” T-shirt. Protesters waved rainbow flags and placards saying “Love is a human right.”

ALSO READ: Taiwan’s Parliament Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage, Mass Weddings Planned

Protesters called on May’s government to bypass the DUP and introduce legislation in the British parliament in Westminster. The Northern Ireland power-sharing government has been frozen for two years because of disagreement between the DUP and the largest Irish nationalist party Sinn Fein.

“If Stormont is incapable of delivering equality for people here, then it is the responsibility of the Westminster to end discrimination against the LGBT community,” Amnesty International spokesman Patrick Corrigan said. (VOA)