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Slovakia is Latest European Nation to Detect Bird Flu


Officials in the eastern European nation of Slovakia say two wild birds found dead appear to have carried the H5N1 strain of bird flu.

Slovakian Agriculture Minister Zsolt Simon said Thursday, the strain was detected in a white grebe found in the capital, Bratislava, and in a peregrine falcon found in Gabcikovo, at the border with Hungary.

He said samples from the birds have been sent to the European Union reference laboratory in Britain.

Slovakia is the latest European Union nation to confirm H5N1 cases. The strain has already been confirmed in France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy and Austria.

Austrian officials Wednesday reported the first European Union case of the deadly disease in poultry.

Bird flu has killed 92 people worldwide since 2003, mostly in Asia.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.
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