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Germany’s Gabriel makes surprise visit to Somalia

Germany's foreign minister has warned of a looming humanitarian catastrophe on a trip to Somalia. Gabriel's visit, the first by a German foreign minister, comes ahead of a international security conference on Somalia. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Monday pledged to double aid to drought-hit Somalia, where more than 6 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. Gabriel arrived in the capital, Mogadishu, under heavy security on an unannounced visit, the first ever by a German foreign minister to the Horn of Africa country. Echoing warnings from the United Nations, Gabriel said several years of drought was causing a "humanitarian catastrophe" that required the international community to step up its support. Germany has already pledged 70 million euros ($76 million) in assistance to Somalia. "We are ready to at least double that," Gabriel said during a meeting with Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire. 'No longer a failed state' The visit comes ahead of a May 11 international conference in London to discuss security, economic development and political reform in Somalia. Known often for its record of civil war, starvation, piracy and terrorism, Somalia has long been the poster child of a "failed state." But since 2012 the country has slowly begun to emerge from its darkest days, establishing a fragile internationally backed government. Gabriel said the international community should no longer view Somalia as a failed state, "but as a state which laboriously struggles to recreate a reliable state structure" enabling it to "guarantee security." Gabriel also said Somalia's security forces would need to be trained and improved. Insurgency challenge Somalia's government faces an ongoing insurgency by the radical Islamist terror group al-Shabab, which controls larges swaths of territory and regularly carries out attacks. Some 20,000 African Union peacekeeping troops are in the country supporting the Somalia government against al-Shabab and helping secure the delivery of humanitarian aid. The European Union provides much of the funding to the African Union mission. On Monday, Gabriel also plans to meet with internally displaced persons and former al-Shabaab fighters. Germany provides financial support to two centers run by the International Organization for Migration to reintegrate former al-Shabaab fighters. According to the UN, more than 30 million people are in need of food assistance in Yemen, South Sudan, Nigeria and Somalia due to conflict and drought. UN agencies have warned that there is currently enough money to provide assistance to only 8.4 million of them.

Germany’s foreign minister has warned of a looming humanitarian catastrophe on a trip to Somalia. Gabriel’s visit, the first by a German foreign minister, comes ahead of a international security conference on Somalia. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Monday pledged to double aid to drought-hit Somalia, where more than 6 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance. Gabriel ... Read More »

German cabinet proposes national ban on child marriages

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government has agreed on a new draft law aimed at outlawing child marriages. By the end of July 2016, almost 1,500 minors with non-German backgrounds were registered there as married. Germany's cabinet on Wednesday agreed on a proposal to outlaw child marriages. The recommended legislation, drawn up by Justice Minister Heiko Maas, sets the minimum age for marriage in Germany at 18 years and nullifies all existing marriages where a participant was under the age of 16 at the time of the ceremony. Courts would also be able to annul marriages in which one person was between 16 and 18 years old. "We cannot tolerate any marriages that might harm the natural development of minors," Maas said, adding that children "do not belong in the registry office or at the altar." The age of consent for all marriages in Germany was previously 16, with 18-year-olds allowed to marry 16-year-olds in some cases. More than 300 married kids under age 14 The justice minister said the bill would tighten marriage laws being aimed particularly at marriages concluded outside of Germany. According to the Cologne-based Central Register of Foreign Nationals (AZR), by the end of July 2016, almost 1,500 minors with non-German backgrounds living in the country were registered as married - 361 of them aged under 14. The largest group, 664 children, came from Syria followed by 157 from Afghanistan, 100 from Iraq, and 65 from Bulgaria. Exceptions still possible the proposed law allows youth welfare workers the right to take married children into state care even if they were legally married abroad and, if deemed necessary, separate them from their spouses. Exceptions are also possible if the couple were married as children but are now both adults and want to stay married. Under the bill, any attempts to marry minors in traditional or religious celebrations rather than state ceremonies will be punished with a fine.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government has agreed on a new draft law aimed at outlawing child marriages. By the end of July 2016, almost 1,500 minors with non-German backgrounds were registered there as married. Germany’s cabinet on Wednesday agreed on a proposal to outlaw child marriages. The recommended legislation, drawn up by Justice Minister Heiko Maas, sets the minimum age ... Read More »

Germany’s Left party tries to distinguish itself with ambitious election platform

Germany's left-wing party vowed to pursue a higher minimum wage, raise corporate taxes and protect refugees. The Left also tried to distance itself from the SPD, while also holding out for the possibility of a coalition. Germany's Left Party unveiled its official campaign platform on Monday ahead of federal elections in September. Under the slogan of "Social Justice for All," the liberals hoped to carve out a niche for themselves in an election year characterized by a weakening of party identity across the board. "We want to take a very clear stance against the right-wing. For us there are no upper limits. The right to asylum is not negotiable," said party co-chair Bernd Riexinger in Berlin, making it very clear that the "for all" part of their slogan included Germany's many new arrivals as well. Other key points in the Left's platform included raising the minimum wage from 8.84 euros to 12 euros ($9.42 to $12.78), imposing regulations on landlords seeking to raise rents, and ending Germany two-tier healthcare system that has both a public and private option in favor of a more "equal" program. They also want to halt all weapons exports Riexinger also sought to contrast the Left party as much as possible with the Social Democrats (SPD), the center-left mainstream party who, along with Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU), have made up the core of German politics since the end of World War II. Left tries to have it both ways with SPD Indeed, one of the major issues in this year's election is that after four years of a grand coalition between the SPD and CDU, increased prosperity and agreement on a number of key issues, Germany's political parties are struggling to highlight their differences from other another. In that vein, Reixinger said that "the biggest difference between us and the SPD is in our tax policy." The Left wants to close loopholes and increase taxes on business and the wealthy, which they hope will help fund some of their more ambitious programs like a universal basic income and massive investment in education and digital infrastructure. As the SPD moves away from Merkel and closer to the left wing of the party under chancellor candidate Martin Schulz, the Left is struggling to hold on to its eight percent poll numbers as newcomers the nationalist Alternative for Germany (AfD) and other smaller parties like the Greens carve up some of its territory. In Germany, parties need at least five percent of the vote to hold seats in parliament. The Left party has hinted that it would be interested in ruling in coalition with the Green party and the SPD, should the possibility present itself in September. However, speaking on German public television on Monday morning, Left party lawmaker Dietmar Bartsch dismissed coalition plotting as "annoying" for voters, and said "every party should fight for itself."

Germany’s left-wing party vowed to pursue a higher minimum wage, raise corporate taxes and protect refugees. The Left also tried to distance itself from the SPD, while also holding out for the possibility of a coalition. Germany’s Left Party unveiled its official campaign platform on Monday ahead of federal elections in September. Under the slogan of “Social Justice for All,” ... Read More »

Podolski delivers his own fitting departure

By the time Lukas Podolski played his last match for Germany, it had long since been clear that he was past his best as a player. However, Joachim Löw and the national team may come to miss him more than they think. It was worth waiting 70 minutes for. It was worth waiting through a poorly timed speech from German football association (DFB) President Reinhard Grindel. It was worth watching a first half of tepid football with little evidence of why a game was even necessary to say goodbye. It was worth it all for that one moment when Lukas Podolski scored a goal harking back to the golden moments of his career. It was a goal that deserved to win any game, but fittingly it won his last one in a Germany shirt. With a slap of the badge on his chest and a parting wave, Podolski departed with six minutes to go. The stadium had waited for this moment, but was still reeling from the fairytale goal that Podolski had just scored. It wasn't until Podolski took selfies with the crowd, climbed into the stands to sing with the fans and was thrown in the air by his teammates that it might have dawned on Germany what they have lost. In this month's edition of German football magazine "11 Freunde," Podolski said: "From 80 million people, 22 or 23 are called up for an international friendly. If I am one of them, am I supposed to complain?" The 31-year-old has never lost touch with his roots, he has never changed his relaxed, friendly, humorous manner. It's what made him so rare in modern football, and what him indispensible to the balance of Germany's squad. It has been clear for a while that on the pitch, he won't actually be missed and tonight was, for the most part, more damming evidence. Before the goal, Podolski looked slow and was snatching at his chances. The crowd was anxious, and it didn't feel like the departure Podolski deserved. However, as things so often tend to go in sports, the fairytale ending was yet to come. Better than Hollywood "You couldn't have written it better in a script," Julian Weigl told DW afterwards. Not even Podolski - a man famous for delivering some great lines over the years - could have imagined such a finish. "It's difficult to describe. You have to experience it," Podolski said. The game itself was something many felt they could have been spared. The Podolski goal and standing ovation for his departure would have sufficed. An impressive choreography, an indifferent performance and far too many Mexican waves were familiar but unnecessary additions to this Germany game. England should have won and spoiled the party, but Marc-André ter Stegen delivered a timely performance between the posts for the national team. Jonas Hector will be hoping his performance is quickly forgotten, whereas Mats Hummels was at his commanding best. "You could see that the processes weren't there and that the young lads, myself included, wanted to impress," Weigl said. Timo Werner certainly did that on his debut, but was perhaps a little overly eager to do well. Life goes on "As a person, we will definitely miss him, but I think we have a lot of good and experienced players who can replace him,” Leroy Sané said. Weigl echoed these sentiments, saying this young side didn't need to hide and was ready to take up the mantle as the old guard stepped down. Behind the tweets, the smiles, and the emotion of the evening also lies a hard truth for Germany. The absence of Lukas Podolski unbalances the Germany squad. Thomas Müller might well take up his mantle, but never has there been a Germany player capable of making humor and ease such a pivotal part of a team's winning formula. "You idiots," was Podolski's initial reaction when he was asked how he felt about being in the mixed zone with all of the national team reporters one last time. He smiled and followed it up with heartfelt thanks for all the media's work during his years in a Germany shirt. It was one last reminder of his unique character - a Cologne boy but a Germany man, who will be missed by the national team more than they yet know.

By the time Lukas Podolski played his last match for Germany, it had long since been clear that he was past his best as a player. However, Joachim Löw and the national team may come to miss him more than they think. It was worth waiting 70 minutes for. It was worth waiting through a poorly timed speech from German ... Read More »

Neuer pulls out of Germany squad, Trapp called up

Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has pulled out of Germany's matches against England and Azerbaijan due to injury. Paris Saint-Germain keeper Kevin Trapp has been called up to fill the gap left by Germany's No. 1. Manuel Neuer, 30, who played the full 90 minutes of Bayern's 1-0 victory at Borussia Mönchengladbach on Sunday, has announced that he will not be involved in Germany's friendly against England on Wednesday, nor the World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan in Baku on Sunday. A statement posted on the German football association's (DFB) website on Monday said that Neuer was suffering from a calf problem and that head coach Joachim Löw had called up Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Kevin Trapp as a last-minute replacement. Trapp was named in the German squad in the international break in November 2015 but is still waiting for his Germany debut. The other two keepers in the current squad are Marc-André ter Stegen of Barcelona and Bernd Leno of Bayer Leverkusen. Germany leads European Group C of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in Russia with four wins from four games - having scored 16 goals while conceding none.

Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has pulled out of Germany’s matches against England and Azerbaijan due to injury. Paris Saint-Germain keeper Kevin Trapp has been called up to fill the gap left by Germany’s No. 1. Manuel Neuer, 30, who played the full 90 minutes of Bayern’s 1-0 victory at Borussia Mönchengladbach on Sunday, has announced that he will not ... Read More »

German Foreign Minister Gabriel fears new arms race with Russia

Gabriel has also called for conventional disarmament while meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov in Moscow. The German politician is scheduled to meet President Putin later in the day. "We have concerns that we are entering into a new arms race," Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel told his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on Thursday during their meeting in Moscow. Gabriel also warned that Germany would regard any attempt to influence public opinion with the utmost seriousness. The German politician responded to revelations on Tuesday by WikiLeaks that the CIA had hacked into encrypted messages and used Frankfurt as a base for its digital espionage operations, saying that Germany did not have any information about the cyber attacks. The agenda for the visit, which comes on the heels of a visit to Poland, centers on sensitive topics in the German-Russian relationship including Ukraine, Syria and NATO. Although Gabriel has been Germany's foreign minister for just six weeks, the politician from the Social Democratic Party (SPD) is meeting with old acquaintances. As a former Minister of the Economy, Gabriel received Putin three times when he held that post. Tricky topics on the table Gabriel inherited a delicate relationship from his predecessor Frank-Walter Steinmeier, made more uncertain by the Trump administration's overtures to Russia and the Baltic and EU-member nations' fears of an increasingly resurgent Kremlin. The foreign minister told Interfax reporters that a "relapse into Cold War times" must be avoided "at all costs." In this charged atmosphere, Gabriel is seeking to make progress on certain key issues. He will continue a push for progress he began at the Munich Security Conference aimed at subduing the violent fighting that has flared up in East Ukraine in recent weeks, as a ceasefire between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian troops dissolved. Chancellor Angela Merkel's policy is to tie the removal of sanctions imposed against Moscow to a Russian adherence to the Minsk agreement. Gabriel and Lavrov will also discuss the six-year-long conflict in Syria andthe upcoming peace talks in Geneva and possibilities for stabilizing Libya, a key departure point for migrants seeking EU entry. NATO-Russia Council Despite the Baltic and Eastern European EU member states' fears of increased Russian aggression - which led NATO to station some 4,000 troops in the region - Gabriel is likely to appeal for regular meetings of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) in an effort to de-escalate tension. Gabriel recently questioned the military alliance's two percent defense spending commitment. Before his reception by the Kremlin, the German politician met Thursday morning with leaders of Russian civil organizations at the German Ambassador's residence in Moscow. The assembled group included writers, editors and the leader of Greenpeace Russia.

Gabriel has also called for conventional disarmament while meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov in Moscow. The German politician is scheduled to meet President Putin later in the day. “We have concerns that we are entering into a new arms race,” Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel told his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on Thursday during their meeting in Moscow. Gabriel also ... Read More »

Germany: ‘Unacceptable’ that Russia accepts separatist Ukraine passports

France and Germany have condemned the Kremlin's decision to accept passports issued by authorities controlled by pro-Russian rebels. Meanwhile, a new ceasefire deal is going into effect in Eastern Ukraine. Germany's government on Monday said that Russia's decision to recognize passports issued by separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine "contradicts everything that was agreed in Minsk and is therefore unacceptable," referring to the Minsk Agreement seeking an end to the conflict in Ukraine. "The recognition of travel documents of the self-declared, so-called People's Republics of Lugansk and Donetsk undermines the unity of Ukraine," said Steffen Seibert, the spokesman for German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Russian President Vladimir Putin had ordered Russian authorities on Saturday to recognize civil registration documents issued in separatist-held regions Lugansk and Donetsk, a decision that Kyiv called a "provocation." 'France regrets this decision' France's foreign ministry on Monday also called Russia's new policy unacceptable and against the spirit of the Minsk peace accord, saying that "France regrets this decision." Paris said it wanted Moscow to use its influence over the separatists to ensure application of the terms of the Minsk peace deal, saying: "It is the only way of ensuring a lasting solution to the crisis in east Ukraine," the foreign ministry statement said. Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Monday called the decision was a humanitarian move, meant to help struggling residents in the rebel regions facing transport blockades imposed by Ukrainian nationalist volunteer battalions. People with papers issued by separatists are now allowed to travel to Russia without a visa. The Kremlin said the decree issued by President Putin was only "temporary" until a "political solution" based on the Minsk accords could be found for eastern Ukraine. Authorities in counties held by separatists started issuing their own passports roughly a year ago. These documents closely resemble Russian passports, bearing a two-headed eagle on a red backdrop. Ten thousand killed since 2014 Since pro-Russian rebels revolted against Kyiv's newly-installed pro-Western government in early 2014, the armed conflict in Ukraine's mostly Russian-speaking East has cost some 10,000 lives. In 2015, Ukrainian and pro-Russian separatists signed on the so-called Minsk peace agreement. The sparring parties were meant to withdraw heavy weaponry from the frontline to create a buffer zone in order to bring peace to the region. BothUkrainian and separatist troops have repeatedly broken the agreement since then. In recent weeks, fighting escalated in the region, with some areas experiencing the heaviest artillery fire of the past two years, refocusing global attention on the simmering conflict that - along with the crisis in Syria - has strained the relationship between Russia and most Western countries. This prompted Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine to call for renewed efforts to implement the much-violated Minsk deal. At the Munich Security Conference, a deal was brokered over the weekend, obligating both parties to cease fire and withdraw weapons from the frontline starting on Monday. As of Monday morning, both Ukrainian troops and separatists said that the other side was complying with the agreement.

France and Germany have condemned the Kremlin’s decision to accept passports issued by authorities controlled by pro-Russian rebels. Meanwhile, a new ceasefire deal is going into effect in Eastern Ukraine. Germany’s government on Monday said that Russia’s decision to recognize passports issued by separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine “contradicts everything that was agreed in Minsk and is therefore unacceptable,” referring ... Read More »

German police raid Chemnitz apartment block following possible terrorism alert

At least one suspect has reportedly been detained after anti-terror forces raided a Chemnitz housing block. The city has been under close terror watch after a police raid last October escalated into a nationwide manhunt. Police on Monday night stormed an apartment block in the German city of Chemnitz in what was potentially a response to a terrorism alert. At least one person was arrested. Police confirmed the raid late on Monday after local media had reported that anti-terrorism forces had entered a housing building, accompanied by explosives sniffer dogs. The officers were reportedly wearing gas masks and carrying machine guns. Authorities declined to provide further information, other than confirming the reports. They said they would announce further details on Tuesday. However, the German "DPA" news agency, citing security officials, reported that a number of apartments were raided in the block. German tabloid "Bild" also reported a second police operation in the eastern German city, although officials refused to confirm the reports. Germany's federal prosecutor is reportedly leading the probe. Anti-terror operations in Chemnitz Monday's operation was a throwback to last October's anti-terror raid in Chemnitz, which escalated into a two-day manhunt for Syrian refugee Jaber Albakr. The 22-year-old Syrian, who had reported links to the so-called "Islamic State" jihadist group, was suspected of planning a serious attack on a Berlin airport after police found 1.5 kilograms of the homegrown explosive, TATP. Albakr was apprehended in Leipzig by three fellow Syrian migrants, who tied him up and alerted the authorities. Albakr was subsequently arrested; however, two days later he was found dead in his cell after committing suicide.

At least one suspect has reportedly been detained after anti-terror forces raided a Chemnitz housing block. The city has been under close terror watch after a police raid last October escalated into a nationwide manhunt. Police on Monday night stormed an apartment block in the German city of Chemnitz in what was potentially a response to a terrorism alert. At ... Read More »

Amnesty accuses Tunisian authorities of torture ahead of key talks with Germany

The rights group has reported 23 instances of torture committed by security officials. Tunisia's prime minister is to meet with Germany's Angela Merkel this week to discuss a deportation deal for rejected asylum-seekers. The rights group Amnesty International fears that democratic reforms in Tunisia are being undermined by a rise in "brutal tactics" used by the country's security forces. A report published by the rights group on Monday "exposes how entrenched impunity has fostered a culture in which violations by security forces have been able to thrive," Amnesty's North Africa research director, Heba Morayef, said. Titled "An End to the Fear: Abuses Under Tunisia's State of Emergency," the report details 23 cases of torture and ill treatment committed by the police, the National Guard and counterterrorism brigades in the past two years. Victims quoted in the report said they had "[been] brutally beaten with sticks and rubber hoses, placed in stress positions such as the 'roast chicken' position or forced to stand for prolonged periods, subjected to electric shocks, deprived of sleep or had cold water poured on them." One victim told Amnesty that his legs and feet were beaten until his toenails fell off. Living under the threat of terrorism Since the 2011 revolution that ousted President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and sparked the Arab Spring, Tunisia has been hit by a series of attacks. In the past six years, Islamist assailants have killed more than 100 soldiers and police, around 20 civilians and 59 foreign tourists. The country has been under an ongoing state of emergency since a November 2015 attack killed 12 presidential guards. The report described "Tunisian security forces' reliance on the brutal tactics of the past, including torture, arbitrary arrests, detentions and restrictions on travel of suspects as well as harassment of their family members." "The chilling accounts detailed in this report signal a disturbing rise in the use of repressive tactics against suspects in terrorism-related cases over the past two years, providing a grim reminder of former President Ben Ali's rule," Amnesty reported. Amnesty also expressed concern over travel bans imposed on at least 5,000 people, which officials say are designed to prevent selected young people from joining extremist groups such as the "Islamic State" abroad. "There is no doubt that the authorities have a duty to counter security threats and protect the population from deadly attacks, but they can do so while respecting the human rights protections set out in the Tunisian constitution and international law," Morayef said. Germany and Tunisia in talks over migrant deportations Prime Minister Youssef Chahed will visit Berlin this week for top-level talks concerning the expulsion of rejected Tunisian refugees from Germany. On Friday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel called for faster deportations of rejected Tunisian asylum-seekers and reiterated her push to classify Tunisia, along with regional neighbors Algeria and Morocco, as a "safe country of origin." She has also pledged to help Tunisia cope with the threat of extremism and help rebuild its economy. The issue has become a point of urgency following the December terror attack on a Berlin Christmas market. The perpetrator, Anis Amri, was a Tunisian refugee whose deportation was delayed by Tunisia's initial reluctance to confirm that he was one of its nationals. He went on to kill 12 people and injure 56 others in the truck attack. Amnesty's report will leave a shadow hanging over this week's talks and could have a major bearing on how Germany proceeds with its deportation policy. Immigration and deportations are expected to be among the key issues concerning voters ahead of Germany's general elections in September.

The rights group has reported 23 instances of torture committed by security officials. Tunisia’s prime minister is to meet with Germany’s Angela Merkel this week to discuss a deportation deal for rejected asylum-seekers. The rights group Amnesty International fears that democratic reforms in Tunisia are being undermined by a rise in “brutal tactics” used by the country’s security forces. A ... Read More »

Half-a-million birds killed in Germany since latest bird flu outbreak

More than half a million poultry in Germany have been killed since the latest outbreak of highly contagious bird flu. Disease experts warn of the risk that a human pandemic is possible. Some 391,000 poultry determined to have been exposed to bird flu have been killed and another 154,000 culled as a precaution since the latest outbreak of the highly contagious virus hit Germany last November, according to government numbers obtained by the "Rheinische Post." Nearly 40 countries in Europe, Asia and Africa have reported outbreaks of various strains of avian flu in poultry or wild birds since November, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Fifteen countries in Europe have been hit by the highly pathogenic avian virus, including France, Hungary and Belgium. In Europe, millions of poultry have been culled and preventative confinement measures implemented in an effort to stop the virus from spreading. The mass culling has taken a toll on farmers and increased the price of poultry-based foods in some countries. Large scale outbreaks There are usually two or three bird flu strains recorded at one time, but now there are at least a half a dozen strains active in the past months. They include H5N1, H5N2, H5N8 and H7N8. While virus strains found in Germany and Europe - H5N5 and H5N8 - are not known to pass onto humans, the number of different strains, the global spread and the sheer number of birds infected raises the risk of viruses mixing and mutating, disease experts warn. The Organization for Animal Health has warned the number of concurrent outbreaks in birds are "a global public health concern." Last month, WHO's director-general, Margaret Chan, said "the rapidly expanding geographical distribution of these outbreaks and the number of virus strains currently co-circulating have put WHO on high alert." H5N1 is of particular concern since it jumped into humans in Hong Kong in 1997 and then re-emerged in 2003/2004 to spread from Asia to Europe and Africa. There was also a mini pandemic in 2009/2010. The strain has cause hundreds of deaths and resulted in millions of birds being culled. Disease experts warn that if it were to mutate to gain easy human-to-human transmission capability there could be a global pandemic. In China, more than two dozen people have died so far this winter after multiple outbreaks of H7N9. According to WHO, most people are believed to contract the strain by coming into close contact with infected poultry or entering contaminated areas. It is not believed to spread between humans. Some 900 people in China are believed to have been infected with H7N9 since it emerged in 2013. South Korea, Japan and Taiwan are also fighting major avian flu outbreaks by culling millions of poultry.

More than half a million poultry in Germany have been killed since the latest outbreak of highly contagious bird flu. Disease experts warn of the risk that a human pandemic is possible. Some 391,000 poultry determined to have been exposed to bird flu have been killed and another 154,000 culled as a precaution since the latest outbreak of the highly ... Read More »

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