Mexico's public health secretary said Friday that an outbreak of low-pathogenic bird flu among some chickens in the southeastern state of Chiapas does not pose a risk to humans.
The Health Department reported Thursday that it had detected the strain, AH5N2, in the birds in Chiapas, which borders Guatemala.
The flu has no relation to the deadly H5N1 strain that has already killed more than 70 people in East Asia since 2003, health officials said.
"This strain is not the dangerous kind," Health Secretary Julio Frenk told a news conference. "This does not represent any risk."
Frenk said the AH5N2 strain often infects birds like a "common cold."
Mexico has set up a permanent operation to quickly detect any possible cases of bird flu and is prepared for an outbreak, Frenk said.
So far no &to=http://english.pravda.ru/main/18/90/360/14372_birdflu.html' target=_blank>bird flu cases have been reported in the Americas, he said.
Frenk encouraged Mexicans to continue eating chicken, saying the country's poultry is "100 percent safe."
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