UN claim over Thai and Lao bird flu irresponsible: China
China's Ministry of Agriculture has dismissed a United Nations
assessment that a Chinese strain of bird flu, spread by smuggling, played a role
in the AI outbreaks in Thailand and Laos, according to local media
"It is irresponsible to decide that the strain of virus detected in
Thailand was from a certain country before having sufficient evidence," a
ministry official was quoted as saying by the China Daily newspaper.
The paper said that the ministry "denied the possibility that the virus was
transmitted through poultry trade across the borders."
A Chinese strain of bird
, never seen before in Thailand or Laos, was confirmed in poultry
outbreaks that occurred last month in Thailand and Laos.
Reports from the UN last week indicated that poultry
smuggling was the most likely source of the infection.
The China Daily report said customs data showed that China had not exported
poultry to Thailand or Laos since 2004. It did not address the possibility of
"[The areas] where the virus strain was detected are both very far from the
Chinese border," the official was quoted as saying.
The official also said that more research needed to be done before the source
could be confirmed, and that wild birds could also spread the disease.
The Food and Agriculture Organisation said
migratory birds could not be to blame because they are not on the move in
Southeast Asia this time of year.
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