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Wednesday, March 30, 2005
  Dear Leader may have a problem
N. Korea struggling to curb bird flu: "SEOUL, March 30 (UPI) -- North Korea has vowed to prevent the spread of deadly bird flu beyond the poultry farms where the outbreak happened, saying it has slaughtered hundreds of thousands of chickens and was taking countermeasures to contain the disease.

But officials and experts in South Korea raise concerns that the outbreak may be extensive enough to wipe out the impoverished country's poultry industry and spread into neighboring South Korea and China, given Pyongyang's poor quarantine equipment and technology.

The North's official Korean Central News Agency said on Sunday that bird flu had broken in 'two to three' chicken farms, including one in the Pyongyang. On the following day, the state's two major radio stations repeated news of the outbreak.

It was the first time North Korea officially confirmed that bird flu, which caused serious health risks in Southeast Asia and China, has hit the isolated communist state. North Korea has said it was free of the disease up until two weeks ago, when South Korean media reported the outbreak of the animal disease in North Korea."
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