(Associated Press –
By AUDRA ANG
The government feels "great sorrow" over the crisis which has sickened more than 50,000 children, Wen said in an interview published in this week's Science Magazine.
"We feel that although problems occurred at the company, the government also has a responsibility," Wen said in the Sept. 20 interview posted Friday on the Web site of the magazine, published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
A Chinese version of the interview in the Communist Party's People's Daily newspaper quoted Wen as saying the government had been especially lax in "supervision and management."
"We will handle the incident sincerely and seriously,
and draw deep lessons from it," said Wen, who
has won the admiration of ordinary Chinese citizens for his visits to the
country's poor rural areas and for rallying victims of the devastating May 12
Authorities have blamed dairy suppliers, saying they added the industrial chemical melamine to watered-down milk to dupe quality control tests and make the product appear rich in protein.
Melamine is used in the manufacturing of plastics, fertilizer, paint and adhesives. Health experts say ingesting a small amount poses no danger, but in larger doses, the chemical can cause kidney stones and lead to kidney failure. Infants are particularly vulnerable.
Since the latest scare, milk-linked products from
Dozens of Panamanians died last year after taking Chinese-made medicine contaminated with a thickening agent found in antifreeze.
The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, China's chief quality watchdog, said on its Web site Saturday that a fresh round of random tests of milk showed that none exceeded allowable amounts of melamine.
The agency said it collected samples from 544 batches of liquid milk from 70 brands in 22 cities, and from 105 batches of baby formula from 20 brands in 10 provinces. 10-18-08
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