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In Brief: Two bird flu cases confirmed in Egypt
Caged chickens for purchase in a poultry shop, Cairo, Egypt, 16 February 2007. Egypt is a major route for migratory birds and is one of the countries worst hit by the bird flu virus outside Asia (file photo)
CAIRO, 28 April 2011 (IRIN) - The recent confirmation
of two cases of avian influenza in Egypt has raised fresh fears of a possible spread of the disease when the government is still trying to stabilize following mass protests three months ago.
"Chicken traders move large numbers of birds among the governorates uncensured," said Abdel Aziz Al-Sayed, chairman of the Poultry Section at the Egyptian Federation of the Chambers of Commerce. The fragile security in the country, he added, had allowed many poultry shops and farms to emerge in heavily populated areas, increasing the risk.
Of the 143 cases so far confirmed in Egypt, including the latest two, who had the A (H5N1) virus, 47 have been fatal, according to the UN World Health Organization. "We continue to receive large numbers of people who suffer bird flu symptoms," said Mahmud Abdel Meguid, chairman of the Abassiya Fever Hospital. "Most of them test negative, but we have to take these complaints seriously."