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Swine Flu Prompts Mumbai Closures


The Indian government is closing schools, colleges and movie theaters in Mumbai in an effort to contain the spread of the H1N1 swine flu virus.

Authorities say the closures will be in place for one week beginning on Thursday. The move is expected to affect an estimated 1,100 schools in the commercial city.

Eleven of the nation's 15 swine flu deaths have taken place in Mumbai's Maharashtra state. Three of those died in the city of Mumbai, which has a population of about 18 million people.

Health officials say more than 1,000 people in India have tested positive for the virus.

Indian authorities announced new measures to control the virus after the country's first swine flu casualty earlier this month.

Separately, France's minister of education says the government is prepared to broadcast school lessons on television and radio should a swine flu outbreak force schools to close.

Also, authorities have said Costa Rican President Oscar Arias has contracted the H1N1 flu and is expected to return to work on Monday.

The World Health Organization has declared the swine flu outbreak a pandemic.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.

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