Myanmar declares itself free of bird flu | india | Hindustan Times
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Myanmar declares itself free of bird flu

india Updated: Sep 06, 2006 12:31 IST

Military-run Myanmar has declared itself free of bird flu after months without a new reported outbreak, state media said on Wednesday.

"Having controlled the spread of the epidemic by culling chickens and quail ... it was confirmed that no virus was in the nation," the New Light of Myanmar newspaper said, adding the government Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department declared Myanmar bird flu free on Monday.

Myanmar is among the countries often accused by international experts of lacking openness in its monitoring for bird flu.

The country reported its first outbreak of the disease in March around the central city of Mandalay.

The government slaughtered some 660,000 birds and has insisted the outbreaks have been under control since the first week of April.

"In cooperation with foreign experts, a three-month programme on detection of avian influenza was conducted with the use of modern technology starting from 29 April," the paper reported.

Myanmar's Health Minister Kyaw Myint said that no human bird flu infections were detected during the outbreaks after confirming negative results from 10 suspected cases, the paper said.

The disease has killed about 140 people, mostly in Asia, since the current outbreak started in 2003.