Deadly downside to Nigeria gold rush: video

Al Jazeera is reporting that more than 400 children have died from lead poisoning in the past two years in the Zamfara State of Nigeria, as a result of artisanal gold mining.

International aid group Doctors Without Borders voiced its concerns earlier this year, saying that at least other 4,000 minors have been severely affected by unsafe mining practices.

The group told Voice of America in May that emergency federal funds were needed to prevent many of these children from dying and qualified the problem as "the worst outbreak in modern history".

According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control director, Abdulsalam Nasidi, an estimated 10 tonnes of gold are illegally extracted in the area every year. He added is common to spot women, many of whom are nursing mothers, carrying their babies to the mining sites and exposing themselves and the children to lead poisoning, resulting to early deaths.

Watch Al Jazeera's Mohammed Adow report: