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Keywords:

  • mercury poisoning;
  • health risk;
  • treaty

The international Minamata Convention on Mercury to protect human health and the environment from anthropogenic emissions and releases of mercury and mercury compounds was formally adopted at a 10 October meeting in Minamata, Japan. The legally binding treaty, currently signed by 92 countries, comes 57 years after the government of Japan officially acknowledged, in 1956, the existence of Minamata disease, which was caused by eating seafood contaminated with methylmercury compounds discharged into Minamata Bay in southern Japan.