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Cambodia records 2nd death from H5N1 bird flu so far this year

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Phnom Penh: A 50-year-old man from eastern Cambodia’s Svay Rieng province died of H5N1 human avian influenza, which was the second death from the virus in the country so far this year, the Ministry of Health (MoH) said in a news release Sunday night.

The man tested positive for H5N1 bird flu on Oct. 7, the ministry said, without specifying his time of death.

Prior to his death, about 50 chickens, owned by the man and his neighbors, had died, and the dead chickens were shared among villagers to eat, the ministry said.

“The MoH officials are looking into the source of the infection and are examining any suspected cases or people who have been in contact with the victim,” the MoH said.

H5N1 influenza is a flu that normally spreads between sick poultry, but it can sometimes spread from poultry to humans, according to the World Health Organization.

The MoH said bird flu still poses a threat to people’s health, especially children, calling on people not to eat ill or dead poultry. It added that poultry must be well-cooked.

The ministry said from 2003 to date, there were 58 cases of infected humans, and 39 people had died in the Southeast Asian country.

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