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Taiwan to launch anti-bird flu exercise
Updated: 2005-10-17 09:27

Taiwan's Council of Agriculture (COA) will hold a large-sized exercise on Oct. 19 in which health, customs and transportation officials will take part in a simulation of fighting an outbreak of avian flu, COA officials said on Sunday.

According to reports reaching here from Taipei, participants in the exercise will simulate killing affected birds, burying or burning the culled birds, and managing their own health risks, according to the officials.

As the highly infectious disease has been found in recent years in Asia, Europe and the Americas, the COA said Taiwan must increase its preparations against a possible flu epidemic caused by the H5N1 virus.

Taiwan health experts have warned that if the virus mutates into a strain that can jump to humans and become infectious among humans, it could cause widespread chaos and heavy casualties.

Some Asian countries have already reported cases of bird flu and now is the season for migratory birds to pass through Taiwan in their journey south, the officials said.

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