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Myanmar Fighting Bird Flu Outbreaks
According to U.N. agriculture officials' statements on Monday, Myanmar is struggling with more than 100 outbreaks in domestic birds since the virus was first reported a month ago. Burma confirmed its first case of bird flu infection on March 13, in the central town of Mandalay, 700km north of Rangoon, and within a week the number of outbreaks had climbed to 5. He Changchui, from the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization, said the situation is more serious than they have imagined, reporting outbreaks in the central district of Mandalay and the northern district of Sagaing. "We're going to be focusing on Myanmar [Burma] a lot in the next few days and weeks, trying to make sure that the authorities and civil society in that country are able to cope better," said David Nabarro, the U.N.'s bird flu coordinator. Besides providing vaccines and protective equipment for agricultural workers, the World Health Organization is also sending a team to Yangon in order to evaluate human defenses against the H5N1 virus. So far, there has been no human infection with the H5N1 in the country. Myanmar is a sensible problem when it comes to discussing funds, because of its isolation from international human rights and the detention of democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi. Asian Development Bank stated last month that the country will be eligible for funds, from a $38 million program, in order to help poor countries in fighting health threats.

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