Nepal calls for foreign assistance in bird flu control

January 18th, 2009 - 8:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Kathmandu, Jan 18 (Xinhua) Nepal Sunday called on the foreign donor organisations to help the country in combating bird flu outbreak. Nepal’s Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Jayaprakash Prasad Gupta said: “Although Nepal has manpower, it lacks the resources (to control bird flu).”

He made the remarks at a programme on bird-flu in Parsa district, some 90 km from the Nepali capital, Sunday.

The government Friday announced the outbreak of bird flu in the country.

The avian influenza or bird flu is a contagious disease of animals caused by viruses that normally infect only birds and, less commonly, pigs.

Avian influenza viruses are highly species-specific. On rare occasions, it crossed the species barrier to infect humans.

The first case of bird flu in the country was reported in Mechinagar municipality area of Jhapa district, some 320 km southeast of Kathmandu.

The announcement came after laboratory tests conducted in London showed bird flu in chicken samples taken from a household in Mechinagar.

Specialist teams Sunday culled more than 13,000 chicken and other birds in Mechinagar, the minister said.

Gupta said the culling and other preventive measures would continue for next four-five months.

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