Foot and mouth alert in Bahrain
Manama, April 9, 2009
Cows recently imported to Bahrain from Europe were found to have been infected with the deadly foot and mouth disease (FMD), it was revealed.
No figures are available but all the cattle affected have been slaughtered, said Municipalities and Agriculture Affairs Ministry animal wealth director Dr Salman Abdul Nabi Ebrahim.
Thorough checks on all cattle imports from the 'FMD endemic' countries had ensured that any stock displaying symptoms of the disease were immediately destroyed, he told our sister newspaper Gulf Daily News.
'We have done that all the time and will continue to do so,' said Dr Ebrahim.
'However, there had been no FMD outbreak among Bahraini cattle and that part is well taken care of.'
Dr Ebrahim also strongly denied suggestions that Bahraini cattle were at risk of being infected.
'Yes, we have had infected cattle arriving from overseas but that has not affected the local stock,' he said.
'We do not have any exports of cattle to any other nation so Bahrain spreading FMD does not arise.'
Dr Ebrahim was speaking following a report in the Philippine newspaper Business World Online which claimed the Philippine Department of Agriculture may ban import of FMD-prone animals from Bahrain.
The report also spoke about an FMD outbreak in Bahrain.
'We do not export animals anywhere and there has been no outbreak here,' Philippine Agriculture Under-Secretary Jesus Emmanuel Paras told the paper.
FMD is a highly contagious and sometimes fatal viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals, including domestic animals such as cattle, water buffalo, sheep, goats and pigs as well as antelope, bison and deer.
Dr Ebrahim said the disease can be spread by humans carrying germs on their clothes and also via animals that are not susceptible to the disease.-TradeArabia News Service