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Russia struggles to contain bird flu outbreak

H5N1 is on the march

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Russia has said that an outbreak of bird flu in the Ural mountains is spreading, despite its efforts to contain the virus.

Workers are reportedly destroying birds in Chelyabinsk, in a bid to prevent the disease, confirmed as the H5N1 strain which can be dangerous to humans, making its way further west into Russia, Reuters reports.

"Anti-epizootic and anti-epidemical measures are being taken to prevent the spreading of the infection among domestic birds and to exclude the possibility of the infection moving to humans," the Emergencies Ministry said in a statement.

As many as 11,000 Russian birds have died from the disease, according to the Ministry, but it says that so far, there have been no cases of human infection in the country.

Earlier this month, Russia issued a warning that migrating birds could carry the disease into the rest of Europe. It is thought that birds journeying from Asia first brought the virus into Siberia. In Asia, more than 50 people have died from the virus since 2003. ®

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