Bird flu re-surfaces in Southern Turkey

09-02-2007 | |

In the southeastern Turkish province of Batman, bird flu has been detected among poultry in a village with experts still examining whether it is the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain, the agriculture ministry said Thursday.

“There has been no finding so far to suggest that humans in the region may have been infected,” said ministry spokesman Osman Bengi. “Detailed work is under way to determine the type of the disease,” Bengi added.
A quarantine zone was imposed within a 10 km-radius around the village of Bogazkoy, where 170 birds died, it said. The zone includes two other villages nearby. The virus is believed to have been brought into the area by migratory birds.
A major bird flu outbreak claimed the lives of four Turkish children in January 2006 in a remote eastern region near the border with Iran, from where the virus quickly spread to more than one third of Turkey’s 81 provinces.
The disease had been eliminated in Turkey since the last recorded case on March 31. More than 2.5 million birds were culled across the country. A nationwide action plan of measures to prevent the possible spread of the virus has been activated amid renewed warnings to people not to keep poultry outdoors.
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