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Officials collecting poultry in Ankara, Turkey earlier this week (epa)
11 January 2006 -- Georgian authorities say they are checking reports that the crew of a Turkish vessel threw dead birds into the sea off Supsa, a port city in western Georgia.
Georgia's Veterinary Department said today representatives of the Agriculture and Health ministries were expected in Supsa any time soon to verify those reports.
Meanwhile, Agriculture Minister Mikheil Svimonishvili said he saw no motive for concern after Turkey's media this week reported bird flu cases in the country's eastern Ardahan Province, which is near the Georgian border.
Svimonishvili said all measures were being taken to prevent the deadly virus from entering the country.
Authorities in Georgia's separatist republic of Abkhazia today said they had banned imports of birds and feathers from Turkey in a bid to avert the disease.