Egypt denies reports of bird flu outbreak

Special Egypt denies reports of bird flu outbreak
Poultry traders feed some of their birds in the village of Tanta in the Nile deltas, 150 kilometers (93 miles) north of the capital Cairo, Egypt. The Egyptian government has denied reports of a bird flu outbreak in the southwestern Al-Wadi Al-Gedid Governorate. (AP/File)
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Updated 22 December 2020

Egypt denies reports of bird flu outbreak

Egypt denies reports of bird flu outbreak
  • Egypt suffered a major outbreak of bird flu in 2006, which led to the suspension of all poultry exports

CAIRO: The Egyptian government has denied reports of a bird flu outbreak in the southwestern Al-Wadi Al-Gedid Governorate.

The General Authority for Veterinary Services rejected claims on some media websites that the isolated province has been been hit by the outbreak.

Egypt’s Ministry of Agriculture urged media outlets and social media users to seek accuracy in news publishing and to contact the authorities before publishing.

The bird flu (commonly known as H5N1) strain spread in the early 2000s in Asia, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, resulting in the slaughter of tens of millions of chickens and ducks.

World Health Organization (WHO) officials said that many people were infected and several died.

Egypt suffered a major outbreak of bird flu in 2006, which led to the suspension of all poultry exports.

Authorities have been pressing for a renewal of exports and, earlier this year, the World Organization for Animal Health, an intergovernmental body, declared Egypt free of bird flu for the first time in 14 years.

Infections with bird flu and other forms of zoonotic influenza in humans may cause illnesses ranging from mild conjunctivitis to pneumonia, but can also be life threatening, according to the WHO.