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China Provides WHO with Bird Flu Strains

China has provided 23 bird flu strains to the World Health Organization (WHO) and publicized all these gene sequences, Vice Agriculture Minister Niu Dun said on Tuesday.

He made the remarks in the Chinese capital at the bird flu control seminar of the Asian-Europe Meeting that aimed to appeal for more investments and inter-governmental scientific cooperation to control the influenza.

Niu noted that the international community should work together to fight against the deadly bird flu virus and to ensure healthy development of the husbandry industry.

"For this, the Chinese government has provided aid in capital, materials and technologies at its own capacity and actively participated in a series of international seminars on bird flu control."

David Nabarro, coordinator of the bird flu section of the United Nations, called for all nations to share responsibilities and conduct bird flu cooperation as an avian influenza outbreak was not bound by borders.

Bird flu first broke out in Southeast Asia at the end of 2003, and spread to Europe and Africa in 2005. To date, more than 60 countries and regions have recorded outbreaks of the fatal influenza.

According to latest WHO statistics, 334 people were confirmed to be H5N1 positive, of which 205 had died.

(Xinhua News Agency November 14, 2007)

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