Three cases of foot-and-mouth disease identified in Iran
Three cases of foot-and-mouth disease — the epidemic provoking livestock quarantines across the United Kingdom and Europe — have been identified in Iran for the first time, Iranian television said Sunday, March 4.
The disease was diagnosed in three sheep in the mountainous Sharud region, northwest of Tehran, Akbar Motalebi, the head of Iran's veterinary organization, told Iranian television.
Motalebi discounted the chances of an epidemic in Iran. Foot-and-mouth disease "has existed in the past in certain areas of Iran due to the smuggling of cattle into the country," he said. Motalebi added the malady is treatable with a vaccine.
Police have been alerted to prevent the transport of the infected animals anywhere in the country, he said.
As the source of the foot-and-mouth scourge, Britain has banned all livestock movements, thrown up a quarantine around farms, country parks and zoos, cancelled sporting events and slaughtered 45,000 animals as it struggles to contain the highly-infectious disease.
Iran imports beef from Australia and South America. Before the mad cow disease epidemic over the last year, Iran imported large amounts of cattle from France and Ireland. All beef imports have been banned from Europe in light of the mad cow disease panic. — (AFP, Tehran)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)