Sunday, December 18, 2005

News - New cases of bird blu reported in Romania

Romania has detected new cases of bird flu in domestic fowl in a village about 80 km east of Bucharest, bringing the total number of bird flu outbreaks in the country to 18, the Ministry of Agriculture announced on Saturday.

The latest outbreak was reported in the the village of Marsilieni in Ialomita county, where dead chickens from five farms were confirmed to have carried the H5 strain of bird flu.

In precautionary measures, local authorities have ordered culls of all domestic fowl and imposed a quarantine in the village, said the ministry.

Romania has seen a quite fast spread of the bird flu virus recently, but most of the cases were in the Danube river delta, located some 300 km from Bucharest on a major migration path of wild birds. So far, no human cases have been reported.

A total of 100,000 poultry have been slaughtered in the countrysince the first case was discovered on Oct. 7.

A deadly H5N1 strain of the H5 virus that has killed nearly 70 people in Asia in the past two years remains hard for people to catch, but there are fears that it could mutate into a form easily transmissible among humans and eventually cause a human flu pandemic.

Xinhua - English

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