China's Foreign Ministry on Thursday rejected a report
by the U.S.-based National Academy of Sciences that a new strain of H5N1 bird
flu has been found in the south of the country.
"The continuous surveillance since 2004 has found no evidence of major
mutations to the virus and the biological characteristics of the bird flu
viruses selected from the south share a high uniformity," Foreign Ministry
spokesman Liu Jianchao said.
A report about a new strain of H5N1 bird flu in southern China was released
in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this week, saying it was
found in almost all poultry outbreaks and some human cases.
Liu said the findings of mutations to the virus in the northern China have
been reported to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World
Organization for Animal Health (OIE).
"China has cooperated closely with the WHO and the FAO and shares all
information on bird flu and the virus with the international community," said