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Vietnamese Officials Dismissed for Alleged Misuse of Bird Flu Funds

Vietnamese authorities say two government officials have been dismissed for allegedly embezzling funds designated for fighting the spread of bird flu.

Communist party officials said Wednesday that district agricultural department chief Phan Bach Tuyet and accountant Van Van Phet were let go last month in the An Phu district of An Giang province.

The two allegedly took $5,000 earmarked for purchase of equipment to be used to prevent the spread of bird flu in 2004 and 2005.

Vietnam is the country worst-hit by bird flu. The deadly H5N1 strain of the virus has killed more than 40 people there since 2003.

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