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Japan Calls for US Investigation of Suspicious Beef Shipment

Japan has called for the United States to fully investigate why a recent shipment of American beef contained prohibited spinal material that could cause "mad-cow" disease.

Japanese Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe says no American beef will be allowed into Japan until the U.S. takes action to prevent a repeat of the incident.

Abe says Tokyo will ask meat sellers to inspect all U.S. beef shipments already in Japan to see if they contain potentially dangerous cattle parts.

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick apologized for the incident in talks with Japanese officials in Tokyo Monday. He said the company that shipped the suspicious meat will be barred from further exports.

Japan resumed U.S. beef imports last month following a two-year halt, but reimposed the ban Friday after inspectors found spinal material in a shipment of veal.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.