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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 08:24, February 27, 2006
Nigeria confirms occurrence of bird flu in two new states
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Bird flu has been found in two new states in Nigeria, which reported Africa's first cases of the disease in birds, an official statement said on Sunday.

"Following ... confirmatory tests in samples ... the Presidential Committee of the Prevention and Management of Avian Flu confirms the occurrence of the avian flu in two new States," said the statement issued by the Avian Flu Crisis Management Center.

The outbreak in the northeastern state of Yobe and central state of Yobe Nasarawa brought to nine the number of locations already identified with the disease in west African country.

"The presidential committee will offer support to these States by providing personal protective equipment to aid proper management of the outbreak and training/enlightenment of local veterinary officials, poultry farmers and other stakeholders," the statement said.

It said the northwest state of Zamfara was also "at risk because of its contiguity to other states where the outbreak had been recorded."

On Wednesday, Mohammed Belhocine, the World Health Organization 's representative in Nigeria said by telephone that Nigeria was testing one old woman who died last week and two kids to find out whether they are the first human cases of the bird flu in Africa.

The statement, however, reiterated "that there are, presently, no reported cases of the avian flu virus in human beings in Nigeria."

Nigeria is the first country on the African continent to report an outbreak of the deadly H5N1 bird flu virus which has claimed at least 92 lives, mostly in Asia, since 1997.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization warned on Wednesday the bird flu continues to spread in Nigeria and could cause "a regional disaster."

Source: Xinhua

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