Indonesia confirms two more bird flu deaths
Two Indonesians living close to the capital Jakarta have died of bird flu, the health ministry said on Wednesday, bringing the country's death toll from the disease to 115.
A 5-year-old girl from Bekasi east of Jakarta died in January, while a 29-year-old woman from Tangerang, west of Jakarta, died in December last year, the health ministry said on its website.
The girl from Bekasi got sick after her parents had bought a chicken in a market.
"The cat died after it ate the chicken they bought," the statement said.
The 29-year-old fell ill after visiting a market close to her house, the statement said, without elaborating.
Samples from the two women tested positive in two local laboratories, it said.
Indonesia, which has stopped updating bird flu deaths immediately after they occur, has the highest toll from the disease of any nation.
Including the latest two deaths, Indonesia has had 115 deaths confirmed from the deadly H5N1 virus, according to data compiled since 2003 by the World Health Organisation.
Although bird flu remains an animal disease, experts fear that the virus might mutate into a form easily passed from human to human, sparking a pandemic in which case millions could die.
Reuters Last Mod: 21 Ocak 2009, 13:59