CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's Health Ministry says hundreds of schoolchildren have been admitted to hospital in a suspected mass food poisoning this week.

The ministry says the outbreak involved 2,262 children in eight schools in the southern province of Sohag. They developed symptoms after eating school meals provided as part of a government food program for schoolchildren.

The ministry statement late on Tuesday said most of those admitted to hospital have been released. Samples of the meals were being analyzed to ascertain the cause of the suspected poisoning.

The independent Al-Shorouk daily says the Sohag governor suspended the food program pending the outcome of the analysis.

In 2013, university students protested after some 160 colleagues fell ill after a tuna meal at the University of Al-Azhar, Cairo's centuries-old seat of Sunni Muslim learning.

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