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Hong Kong Takes Precaution Against Avian Flu

Hong Kong suspended poultry imports from the area in southern China where a man died from the H5N1 bird flu virus, according to a statement posted today on the region’s Centre For Food Safety website.

The import of live, chilled and frozen poultry along with eggs from the Chinese city of Shenzhen, where the man died, will be suspended for 21 days, according to the statement.

The ban covers a 13-kilometer (8-mile) radius around the man’s home, it said.

Hong Kong began culling more than 17,000 birds last month after the bird flu virus was found in a chicken carcass at a local wholesale market.

Avian flu is a serious public health concern with the potential to cause a deadly pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Since 2003, more than 500 people have been infected with the H5N1 strain worldwide and about 60 percent have died, according to the Atlanta-based agency.

To contact the reporter on this story: Wendy Mock in Hong Kong at wmock3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Tighe at ptighe@bloomberg.net

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