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WHO And China Set Up Collaborative Center For Fighting Bird Flu

The World Health Organization said on Monday that it was setting up a collaborative center for increasing the cooperation with the Chinese government //in fighting diseases like severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, and avian influenza.

A joint statement from the WHO and China's Ministry of Health said that the collaborative center would be opened Tuesday at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Guangzhou. The center will serve as a go-between for increasing information sharing between China and the rest of the world, the statement added.

"We know from SARS and avian influenza that what happens in one country affects another," Shigeru Omi, WHO regional director for the western pacific, was quoted as saying in the statement. "China is helping WHO and the world implement lessons learnt from recent emerging infectious diseases."

SARS first emerged in Guangdong province and was responsible for nearly 800 deaths globally before being controlled in 2003. Till ate bird flu has claimed 127 lives.


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