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The First Casualties of Mauritian Oil Spill

At least 17 dead dolphins have been found on the seashore in Mauritius, more than a month after the huge oil spill caused by a Japanese-owned ship. The deaths have been caused either by the spill or the authorities’ decision to sink the ship’s stem, environmental campaigners say. The carcasses have been sent for a post-mortem, which will establish the cause of deaths, police said. These are the first reported deaths of dolphins since the shipwreck. Up to now, many fish and crabs have been found dead. It is very rare for so many dead dolphins to be found at the same time. The sight of dead dolphins has caused much anger among residents. Oceanographer Vassen Kauppaymuthoo said the dolphins smelled of fuel oil. Greenpeace Africa has warned that “thousands” of animal species are “at risk of drowning in a sea of pollution, with dire consequences for Mauritius’s economy, food security and health”.