China dismisses UN bird flu report

(Aug 21, 2006) China has dismissed a UN report claiming that recent bird flu outbreaks in Thailand and Laos were caused by a strain of the virus from in China.

The People's Daily website quoted the agriculture ministry as saying the UN report was groundless and irresponsible.

Last week the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation said outbreaks in a Thai province and near the Laotian capital Vientiane were caused by a strain that originated in China and had not been seen in that region before.

The agriculture ministry said China had not exported any poultry products to Thailand or Laos since 2004 when China first reported an outbreak of the H5N1 virus in its poultry.

The H5N1 virus has killed about 140 people, mostly in Asia, since 2003. (from NZ Herald)


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