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Mummy factories

The week's news at a glance.

Dalian, China

The new museum craze for exhibiting preserved corpses has spawned an underground mummification industry in China. German scientist Gunther von Hagens first began using legitimate Chinese facilities to preserve human bodies for his exhibit “Body Worlds,” which has been captivating museum audiences all over the world with displays of the muscle and sinew underneath our skin. But as more museums demand similar exhibits, corpse dealing has become a lucrative, if grisly, industry. Human-rights activists say many of the bodies may come from executed prisoners.

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