South Asia

Bird flu in Bangladesh
Nearly 2,000 chickens have been culled in a village in northern Bangladesh after the H5N1 bird flu virus was detected at a poultry farm in the last week of December. This latest spurt of infection was in Dinajpur district, near the capital city Dhaka. The government says the bird flu has spread mainly to northern districts since it was first detected in March 2007. Till now authorities have culled about 275,000 chickens and destroyed nearly 3 million eggs. About 4 million people in Bangladesh are associated with poultry farming.

Lanka's animal welfare bill
Sri Lanka gazetted an Animal Welfare Bill, which aims for the state to accept greater responsibility for the welfare of animals and to protect them from cruelty. Animal welfare lobbies have long waited for the bill that will eventually replace the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Ordinance enacted by the British rulers in 1907, which did not impose adequate penalties for animal cruelty. The gazetted bill also recommends establishing a National Animal Welfare Authority with wide powers to deal with matters relating to animal welfare.

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