Funds to Fight Avian Flu

Funds to Fight Avian FluFunds to Fight Avian Flu

The Disaster Mitigation and Management Organization of Iran has allocated $2.5 million (100 billion rials) to fight avian influenza in seven provinces.

The announcement was made by Esmail Najjar, head of the organization on Thursday, at a meeting of the provincial disaster management coordinating council in Markazi Province, one of those affected by the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain.

He underscored the need to expand insurance coverage in poultry farms to compensate farmers for their losses.

“All farmers, ranchers, and chicken farm owners need to be covered by insurance schemes so they can get relief for at least part of their losses.”

Besides the central Markazi Province, bird flu has been detected in Alborz, Qom, East Azarbaijan, Kermanshah, Mazandaran and Tehran, ISNA reported.

Since the first reports on the spread of the virus in mid-November, over 600,000 poultry has been culled, according to the Iran Veterinary Organization (IVO).

Afghanistan was the latest country to ban the import of chicken and eggs from Iran. Iraq, Azerbaijan Republic and Iraqi Kurdistan banned Iranian import of poultry and related products a week ago.

The IVO said in a statement two weeks ago that all infected areas have been identified and disinfected, but urged poultry farms to be extra cautious about safety regulations. It has banned hunting of wild birds as the migrating birds could be carriers of the virus.

More than 400 wild birds succumbed to the virus around Mighan Lagoon Wetland in Markazi Province over the past week. H5N8 has been reported in at least 20 countries over the past three months.

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