Germany sends more soldiers to bird flu region

The German military today said it had deployed 250 troops to help clear away dead birds from a Baltic Sea coastal region as authorities tried to prevent the spread of bird flu.

The German military today said it had deployed 250 troops to help clear away dead birds from a Baltic Sea coastal region as authorities tried to prevent the spread of bird flu.

Tornado planes also were being sent to the area for reconnaissance duties, the military’s regional command said in a statement.

German authorities deployed the first 40 troops yesterday and ordered a cull of poultry on the island of Ruegen, where the country’s first cases of the deadly H5N1 case of bird flu were confirmed in wild birds last week.

The virus has now been detected in a total of 81 birds, many of them swans, but no farm birds or humans have been diagnosed with it so far.

As well as removing dead birds, the troops are helping disinfect vehicles, equipment and people leaving the affected area.

Army veterinarians have been helping local authorities.

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