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Deadly Strain Of Bird Flu Confirmed In Afghanistan

An Afghan boy kisses a chicken in a market in Jalalabad, March 15 (epa) March 16, 2006 -- The United Nations and the Afghan government have confirmed an outbreak of the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu in Afghanistan.

Six birds were found with the strain. They all came from the east of the country, from the capital Kabul, the city of Jalalabad, and the district of Khogiani.

Samples from the northern city of Konduz and the southern city of Kandahar tested negative.

Experts had earlier expressed concern that the H5N1 strain would appear in Afghanistan, given the country's poor health-care infrastructure.

The H5N1 strain of bird flu has killed millions of birds and about 100 people around the world since 2003. Most of the human victims caught the disease from very close contact with infected birds.

(Reuters, AP)

Affected Areas

Affected Areas

Click on the map for a closer view of the areas within RFE/RL's broadcast region where cases of diseased fowl have been confirmed. Last updated on February 20.

BIRD FLU, or avian influenza, continues to menace scattered areas from East Asia, where the disease first appeared, to Southeastern and Eastern Europe and beyond. Authorities around the world are bracing themselves -- and, more importantly, planning and taking measures to fight the disease wherever it appears.

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