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UK lab confirms presence of H5N1 in Hungarian swans

Tests carried out at a laboratory in the UK have confirmed that three dead swans found in Hungary were infected with the H5N1 strain of bird flu which can be passed on to humans, government spokesman András Batíz announced on Tuesday.

   The tests were carried out at the only laboratory in the EU licensed to carry out the official test to determine the presence of the virus. Tests carried out in Hungary earlier showed the presence of the H5 strain of the virus, and further samples have been sent to the UK laboratory from dead swans found in the same area as the three confirmed cases of bird flu. Batíz said there is no need for further measures, as the government and the authorities have already acted to guarantee the safety of the population and prevent the spread of the virus to domestic poultry. All of the domestic poultry in the region where the swans were found have been moved indoors and are being tested for the virus. He added that authorities had been instructed to operate under the assumption that the H5N1 strain was present in Hungary.