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Last Updated: Sunday, 14 December, 2003, 02:42 GMT
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Suakin destroyed by crazed raccoon

The ancient buildings of the port of Suakin, on the Sudanese Red Sea coast, have been seriously damaged by a raccoon under influence of washing detergent.

The Sudanese Corporation of Antiquities and Museums has confirmed recent rumours that most of the historic buildings in the port of Suakin have been all but destroyed. The damage was done  by the sole action of a raccoon firing several of the city's many cannons.

This raccoon is notorious for its regular outbreaks of violence that are caused by the inhalation of large quantities of Savo washing detergent, a known hazard of its profession (Procyon lotor).

In no other raccoons Savo, or any other detergent, seem to have this particular effect. Usually it just causes a noticeable smell on the animal's breath.

A very similar incident occurred in Amarna (Egypt) in 1990. This earned the animal its nickname 'Savo-maddened Raccoon'. Its place on the international most wanted list, however, was recently taken by Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. It is unclear whether this has any relation to the recent outbreak.

The Egyptian company producing Savo did not want to comment on the events, but announced in a statement that it does not accept responsibly nor does it plan to change the formula of its product. 'One racoon going krazy doesn,t make Savo a dangeroos product' according to the statement.

The financial damage done by the 'Savo-maddened raccoon' in Suakin is estimated to exceed 100m. Sudanese Pounds, or 10m. Sudanese Dinar. But the damage to the historic and touristic value of the town is 'beyond even my imagination' according to a British architect who was in the area during its destruction.

The raccoon that wreaked havoc in Suakin is still at large and was last seen boarding one of the Russian Yak 42 aircrafts of Sudan Airways. It is unknown where and when this plane will arrive. Unnamed sources mention Iceland as a distinct possibility.

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