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S Korea Culls Over Three Million Livestock to Control FMD

02 February 2011

SOUTH KOREA - South Korea's quarantine authorities said Wednesday that they ordered the culling of more than three million animals to control the spread of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD).

The farm ministry said 142 cases of the highly contagious disease have been reported nationwide so far, including an outbreak in Hongseong, 150 kilometers south of Seoul, late Tuesday, after the first outbreak was confirmed on 29 November.

It said that while nationwide vaccinations were ordered for all 13 million heads of cattle and pigs in the country, with inoculations administered from Dec. 25 onward, the outbreak is estimated to have caused damage exceeding a minimum 1.5 trillion won (US$1.34 billion), although the number could easily exceed the 2 trillion won mark.

The government has destroyed a total of 148,000 heads of cattle, 2.87 million pigs and over 7,000 goats and deer as the disease has spread across six provinces and two large cities.

Quarantine experts said that because so many people will move around the country during the three-day-long Lunar New Year holiday that runs through Friday, there is a risk of people inadvertently spreading the highly contagious animal disease.

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Source: Yonhap News Agency


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