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Bird Flu Spreads in India and Bangladesh བོད་སྐད།

Indian health officials are warning that the spread of bird flu could spiral out of control if it is not contained in eastern India.

Health officials say Tuesday the virus has already been confirmed in seven of 19 districts in the state of West Bengal. Health workers are facing an uphill battle in the state where many local villagers are unaware of the disease and refuse to give up their poultry to be culled.

West Bengal's animal husbandry minister, Anisur Rahaman, estimates that at least two million birds will need to be killed. Rahaman says the state has already slaughtered about 400-thousand birds.

In neighboring Bangladesh, health workers are scrambling to contain the spread of the disease, which has already reached nearly half of the country's 64 districts.

No human cases of bird flu have been reported in Bangladesh or India.

Separately, in Indonesia today, health officials confirmed that a 30-year-old man has become the country's 120th person to be infected with the virus.

According to the World Health Organization, bird flu has killed at least 218 people worldwide since 2003, mostly in Asia. Indonesia has seen the most deaths in the world, where the WHO says 97 people have already died from the disease.