14:59 GMT +313 December 2018
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    Azerbaijan warns of new bird flu outbreak

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    BAKU, March 24 (RIA Novosti, Gerai Dadashev) - The head of Azerbaijan's veterinary service said Friday that there was a high probability of a fresh outbreak of bird flu during the spring bird-migration season.

    Following World Health Organization confirmation that five out of seven people earlier infected with bird flu in Azerbaijan had died, Ismail Gasanov said disturbing reports about growing risks were coming in from some parts of the country. He added that domestic poultry would be vaccinated and control over poultry farms would be tightened.

    At the same time he said there were substantially fewer wildfowl deaths in the republic because migratory birds were already leaving the country.

    Veterinary services have destroyed 26,000 dead wild birds since the latest outbreak began.

    The WHO said Thursday that tests conducted by experts showed that all the seven people known to have been infected with the potentially lethal H5N1 strain of the virus had fallen ill after coming into contact with wild birds.

    There was some good news, though, as a 10-year-old boy has recovered and been discharged from the hospital, while a 15-year-old girl is still being treated.

    Earlier this month, Azerbaijan confirmed the deaths of three people, who like the recent victims came from two villages in the east of the country.

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