8/30/10

The Daily Beast: Chinese Women, Suicide, and Killer Pesticides

Up to 60 percent of Chinese suicides could be caused by a toxic pesticide banned in many countries.

Pesticide ingestion is involved in 60 percent of Chinese suicides, according to the World Health Organization, which published a 2009 report suggesting a link between exposure to organophosphate pesticides, the type commonly used in China, and suicidal thoughts. Rural Chinese women—with their easy access to toxic pesticides, social isolation, and unique burden of feudal obligations and modern stresses—have been particularly susceptible.

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