Live poultry shops closed in UAE

DUBAI/ABU DHABI - The Minister of Environment and Water, Dr Mohammed Saeed Al Kindi, has ordered the closure of all live poultry shops in the UAE as a precautionary measure, following reports of an outbreak of bird flu in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, recently.
calendar icon 3 April 2007
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A circular to this effect has been issued to all UAE Municipalities. And veterinary doctors and inspectors have been ordered to beef up their role to ensure no wild birds or poultry were brought in through any of the border check points.

At a meeting held by the Secretariat of the National Committee for Emergency Response (NCER) to Avian Flu yesterday, Al Kindi said, “The meeting focused on following up the directive issued by Shaikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, deputy chairman of the Committee on forming a permanent emergency action team to combat bird flu.”

Dr Al Kindi commended the cooperation between the Ministry and the Customs Departments to ensure that this directive was being followed.

Temporary ban

The decree issued last Thursday, enforcing a temporary ban on import of live birds and poultry from Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, is designed to protect the safety of poultry products in the UAE.

The assistant undersecretary of the Ministry of Environment and Water said veterinary doctors are also working with customs personnel at airports, where all incoming birds, poultry and poultry products are being held back for detailed inspections.

The NCER now plans to conduct mock drills in all emirates to test the reactions and alertness levels of emergency response teams. Representative of the armed forces have also confirmed the preparedness of their teams — which are already on full alert in this connection.

Source: Khaleej Times Online

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