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<-Back to WTN Archives UN says China is reporting avian flu outbreak among chickens in Tibet (AP)
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World Tibet Network News

Published by the Canada Tibet Committee

Saturday, August 13, 2005

4. UN says China is reporting avian flu outbreak among chickens in Tibet (AP)

BEIJING, Aug 12 (AP) - An avian flu outbreak in Tibet has killed 133 chickens in the first cases
of the disease found in the Himalayan region this year, but no human cases were reported, an
official from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization said Thursday.

China's Agriculture Ministry informed the FAO on Thursday morning of the outbreak in the Tibetan
capital Lhasa, and said the chickens carried the H5N1 strain of the virus, which has infected
millions of birds in Asia, said Zhang Zhongjun, an official in the FAO's Beijing office.

There was no mention of any human cases, Zhang said.

A spokesman for the Agriculture Ministry said he didn't know of any bird flu cases reported in
Tibet. The spokesman, contacted by telephone, would give only his surname, Li.

Avian flu has killed more than 6,000 migratory birds in China's northern province of Qinghai, and
cases have been reported in the Xinjiang region in the northwest. Both areas border Tibet.

Health experts have warned that migratory geese and gulls in Qinghai could be poised to spread the
virus to India, Australia, New Zealand and eventually Europe when they fly south this summer.

Migratory birds have not been susceptible to bird flu in the past, and the outbreak of H5N1 among
a huge population of wild birds has raised fears that a new more virulent form of the virus has

H5N1 has devastated poultry stocks across the region, killing or forcing the slaughter of hundreds
of millions of chickens and ducks since 2003.

The H5N1 virus has been entrenched in poultry in Southeast Asia since 2003, and has infected
people who came in contact with sick chickens, claiming 61 lives. There have been no reports of
human infections in China.

Experts fear the virus will mutate into a strain that can jump directly from person to person,
unleashing a deadly pandemic.

Articles in this Issue:
  1. China Jails Three Tibetans For Dalai Lama Pictures, Teachings (RFA)
  2. China jails Tibetans for carrying Dalai Lama tapes (IANS)
  3. Friends of Tibet to present program (MDP)
  4. UN says China is reporting avian flu outbreak among chickens in Tibet (AP)
  5. Fate and freedom
  6. The Plunder of Tibet's Treasures (RFA)

Other articles this month - WTN Index - Mail the WTN-Editors

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