Two people, including one Israeli, died in Italy over the weekend, likely from drug-related causes at rave parties, with autopsies ordered to clarify the cause of death, Italian officials said Sunday.
In Lecce, a 23-year-old woman collapsed and died at a rave party attended by some 2,000 people, while in Campobasso a 26-year-old man from Israel died.
The rise in deaths occurring at raves, all night electronic music parties at which large quantities of illegal substances are often consumed, has prompted calls for authorities in Italy to ban such parties.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Yossi Levy told Channel 10 news that "the [Israeli] embassy in Rome received information regarding a man in his twenties who had died under uncertain circumstances at a town some 150 kilometers south of Rome. The Foreign Ministry is checking with Itlian authorities regarding the details of the incident. The embassy in Rome is arranging to have the body transferred to Israel."
An Italian newspaper reported that the young man had felt ill during the party and his friends transported him to a hospital, but he was already dead when they arrived and the doctors had no choice but to pronounce him dead.
According to Channel 10, police investigators believe the young man's death resulted from drug use because at the same hospital where his death was pronounced, two more people who attended the same party are currently hospitalized in the intensive care unit due to drug intake.
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