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Bird flu virus found again in Nepal

KATMANDU, Nepal (AP)--A health official says a deadly strain of bird flu virus has been found poultry in southeastern Nepal just days after officials declared the Himalayan nation free of the disease.

Agriculture Ministry spokesman Hari Dahal says workers have begun to slaughter 10,000 chickens in Sarnamati village, about 250 miles (400 kilometers) southeast of Katmandu, to prevent the H5N1 virus from spreading further.

The virus first emerged in Nepal's poultry last month, but no human cases have been reported.

While the H5N1 virus remains hard for humans to catch, at least 254 worldwide have died from it since 2003. Scientists are monitoring the virus for its potential to mutate to be easily spread among humans, which could set off an influenza pandemic infecting millions.

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