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UN Agency Says Burma Has More Than 100 Bird Flu Outbreaks


U.N. officials say the H5N1 bird flu virus is spreading quickly in Burma, and the situation there is more serious than originally thought.

The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization says health experts who visited Burma in recent weeks found more than 100 outbreaks of bird flu among poultry.

Burmese authorities had only confirmed a handful of cases since the virus was detected March 13th. A regional F.A.O representative He Changchui says the bird flu outbreaks are concentrated in two regions: Mandalay and Sagaing.

The official says awareness of the virus in Burma is "rather poor," and information is not comprehensive.

The U.N.'s top bird flu coordinator David Nbarro says Burma has "major problems" with the virus.

He says U.N. agencies will focus their efforts on Burma in the coming weeks to help authorities and citizens combat the outbreaks.

The World Health Organization plans to send a team to Rangoon later this month.

Information for this report is provided by AP and Reuters.

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