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Bird flu scare: Pak bans poultry imports from India

However, Pakistan ruled out sealing its borders to prevent the deadly virus from spreading.

india Updated: Feb 20, 2006 18:11 IST

Pakistan on Monday banned poultry imports from India following reports of detection of bird flu in Maharashtra.

However, Pakistan ruled out sealing its borders to prevent the deadly virus from spreading.

Pakistan's Food and Agricultural Ministry official Rana Muhammad Akhlaq said Pakistan has banned poultry imports from India, Iran and France in view of reports of detection of cases of bird flu in these countries.

Foreign Office Spokesperson Tasnim Aslam, however, said Pakistan has no plans to seal the borders and called for stepping up of international cooperation to prevent the spread of the virus.

She said Pakistan was deeply concerned over the reports of detection of the H5N1 avian influenza in the neighbourhood, as such deadly viruses do not recognise borders.

She said concerned ministries in Pakistan are taking stock of the situation even though no such case was reported in the country so far. "But we cannot take it for granted," she said.

Asked whether the Government has any plans to seal borders with India, she said "Not at the moment. There is no such proposal."

The first preventive measure is to create awareness. Any cases of flue immediately should be reported to the medical official, she said.

Pakistan imports meat products from India, specially mutton and beef more than the poultry products.

First Published: Feb 20, 2006 18:11 IST