North Korea's Bird Flu Outbreak Alert
North Korea destroyed hundreds of thousands of birds in an effort to prevent the spread of bird flu virus variant that was found on a farm in Pyongyang, state media said.
The country's food supply is now in a vulnerable condition.
North Korea's state news agency reported this week, the researchers found a flock of ducks in Duck Ranch tudan infected with the H5N1 virus from migratory birds. Approximately 164 thousand ducks have been turned off since the first case of infection was found in the last month, according to government reports to the World Organization for Animal Health.
H5N1 is a variant of bird flu virus which has infected a number of species of birds in Asia, Europe and Africa since it was first discovered in Southeast Asia in 2003.
The outbreak appears when millions of people in North Korea could potentially experiencing food shortages. The UN agency for food and agriculture, FAO, said food supplies are projected to crash this year, although last year's wheat harvest was stable, after imports and food aid in 2013 has decreased.
Thousands of supervisory teams such outbreaks have spread throughout the country in order to "keep an eye on the movement of poultry and wild birds," the state-run news agency reported. However, experts say North Korea does not have adequate equipment to combat outbreaks associated with animals if it does not receive foreign aid.
Kwon Tae-jin, director of the Korea Rural Economic Institute in Seoul said poultry farm in North Korea in general can not operate fully and are not able to provide antibiotics.
Pyongyang is now confined to separate poultry with wild birds and their droppings. If this happens, it is likely that birds will be infected.
In the past, North Korea ever making claims regarding the discovery of bird flu vaccines, including against H5N1, without detailing the process. Two weeks ago, North Korea said it had found the H7N9 vaccine, another deadly virus variants that sparked fears in China. http://indo.wsj.com/posts/2013/05/22/korea-utara-siaga-wabah-flu-burung/