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France opens embassy after anthrax scare

COLOMBO, Oct 27 (Reuters) - The French embassy in Colombo will reopen after an anthrax scare last week, a French diplomat said on Saturday.

"We have safely isolated the room where the suspicious mail was received and the embassy will be open while we wait for the results of the test," the diplomat said.

A Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry official said on Friday that the embassy would be closed until the results of the test on the suspicious mail were known.

Sri Lanka has not had a case of anthrax since 1979.

The embassy was one of several missions in Colombo hit by an anthrax scare after mail arrived containing a white powder said to resemble spores of the potentially fatal bacteria.

Government officials say they believed the mail was a hoax but the contents of most of the letters are being analysed by a local laboratory set up this week.

Suspicious mail has also been received by the American, Australian, British, and Indian missions in Colombo, the state television channel, the local office of American Express Bank, and several institutions.


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