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Indonesia Records Another Bird Flu Death

A 29-year-old woman in Indonesia has died in a Jakarta hospital as a result of the avian influenza infection, according to official sources// . However, Ilham Patu, spokesman of Jakarta's Sulianti Saroso Hospital designated to treat bird flu patients, said the results had yet to be confirmed by a World Health Organization (WHO) affiliated laboratory.

"We sent the woman's samples to WHO labs in Hong Kong on Wednesday night," Patu said, adding "If results from local tests are positive, the WHO lab tests will be positive too."

The woman, identified as Sri Mukti, living in the East Jakarta suburb of Cipayung, died on 11 January 2006, four days after being admitted to Sulianto Saroso Hospital Jan 8.

If confirmed by the WHO labs, the case would bring a total of 12 known deaths from the H5N1 strain of avian influenza in Indonesia, home to the world's fourth most populous nation.

There have been five other cases in Indonesia where patients survived. The country is also waiting for the confirmation of test results from the WHO on another man, who died early this month in Jakarta. According to a senior health ministry official, local tests show the man died from bird flu. The avian influenza virus is known to have killed nearly 80 people worldwide.

Edited DPA

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