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Cyprus to lift additional measures on avian influenza
2006-02-15 14:11:08

Nicosia, Feb 15 (CNA) – The additional measures taken by the Cyprus government at check points due to the avian influenza incidents in the Turkish occupied north of Cyprus, will be lifted as of 23rd of February.

Additional measures taken in an area of 10 kilometers around the place where the incidents occurred will also be lifted, according to EU directives which call for lifting measures 30 days after an incident occurs in a region.

However measures announced by the government before the appearance of the incidents, concerning the isolation of domestic birds, will continue all over the government controlled areas of Cyprus with austerity.

Cyprus Minister of Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment Timmy Efthimiou has said “control measures regarding domestic birds, their isolation in fenced off areas and all the measures we announced before the appearance of the incidents will continue. The measures that will cease are the additional ones, taken at the surveillance zone and the check points, and mainly concern the spraying of cars.”

He noted that controls and transportation of any animal products and mainly poultry will continue.

To a question about the validity of the avian influenza incidents in the occupied areas, Efthymiou said that the government did not say there were no incidents.

“We said that certain questions were raised with the appearance of the incidents and those we outlined before the experts and they also have the same questions,” he noted.

He recalled that there was a big delay in issuing the result of the examinations, since they took 17 days to be announced.

Invited to comment Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat’s letter to European Commission President Josep Borrell, protesting the measures taken at the check points, Eftymiou said that the measures taken by the Republic of Cyprus were the ones imposed by the EU and added that Cyprus “was commended by the EU for those measures.”

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