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11 fall ill at Virginia military base after letter is opened

Eleven people fell ill and three were transported to a hospital after a letter was opened at a U.S. military base in Arlington, Va., the fire department and a base spokesperson say.

Federal, military investigators working jointly after 3 people taken to hospital

Marines march during a ceremony at the Joint Base Fort Myer-Henderson Hall in Fort Myer, Va. in 2015. Several people at the base were taken to hospital and later released. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/Associated Press)

Eleven people fell ill and three were transported to a hospital on Tuesday after a letter was opened at a U.S. military base in Arlington, Va., the fire department and a base spokeswoman said.

"Someone opened a letter and everyone at the office started feeling badly," said Leah Rubalcaba, a spokeswoman for Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall.

The three people taken to a hospital were in stable condition, Arlington Fire Department said on Twitter. They were later released, at around 10 p.m. Tuesday, a spokesperson for the base said.

Eight other military personnel members said they began to feel ill but were not hospitalized. 

The letter was opened in the Marine Corps' portion of the base, which is located near Washington. "An envelope containing an unknown substance was received" at the base, the Marine Corps said in a statement.

The building was "screened and cleared" and the letter removed, it said.

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are conducting a joint investigation.

With files from The Associated Press

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