Allegations that China was cutting up and canning human bodies to ship to Africa as corned meat has the Chinese Ambassador in Zambia, Southern Africa, foaming at the mouth with rage. Although the rumor started trending on #Facebook nearly four years ago, there was a resurgence of the story doing the rounds in May this year. The print media grabbed onto the story this week, and this has prompted the first official denial by a Chinese representative. This followed the front page headline #News report about it in the Zambian Kachepa tabloid paper.

Zambia’s Daily Post picked up the story, along with other media outlets and went as far as giving some credit to the report, when they wrote, “…might be that they (China) are shipping the bodies to Africa in the form of canned meat, and they make a profit during the process.”

Investigations.

The Chinese Ambassador was enraged and demanded a full investigation into he originator of the story about marinated human carcasses. In response, the Defense Minister in Zambia, Mr. Christopher Mulenga has promised that a full investigation will be made into the reports. He was quoted by News Xinhuanet as saying that it is regrettable that the story has gone viral on social media, as they ‘have a warm relationship with China.” He did not go so far as actually deny that the human meat scandal may have some basis in truth. Instead he said that Zambian authorities would put together a comprehensive report on the human cadaver scandal.

Other Africans.

Zimbabwe’s Southern Daily pointed out that Zambia is not the only country in Africa where it has been presumed that people might be treated to Asians on the menu. According to them, in a report out of Shanghai, the insanely cheap tinned meat has been sold in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria, as well in Zambia.

Originator.

The originator of the report about the canned human meat could be in for some serious problems with the Zambian government if they are not able to factually verify their allegations. She is, after all, a Zambian National living in China. Her name has been withheld to protect her for security reasons.

Her original story went out after she allegedly visited a beef packing company. When she became suspicious of what was apparently being packed, she claims she was chased away. The story has been debunked in some press, and labeled a malicious hoax. In fact, EuroGamer have pointed out that one of the pictures associated with the Facebook posts was taken from a “Capcom PR stunt promoting Resident Evil.” Nevertheless, not everyone is shocked  by the allegations, – after all, in China they eat bear-bile, dogs and cats, and are fond of tiger and lion-bone wine.

#Foreign Affairs