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    Shockwaves from bird flu; hunting ban to be announced this week

    Hürriyet Haber
    13.10.2005 - 13:57 | Son Güncelleme:

    Environment and Forestry Minister Osman Pepe, announcing that it has been determined that birds carrying the deadly bird flu virus have carried the virus into Turkey on their stopovers in the Manyas wetlands, has called an urgent meeting of the Center Hunting Commission. Said Pepe, "In one or two days, the Hunting Commission will proclaim a decision to ban hunting throughout all of Turkey."

    Pepe also noted that precautions had been taken in advance of the appearance of bird flu in Turkey, as experts had been aware of the realistic chance that birds on migratory paths would bring the disease into Turkey. Speaking about the anger of the hunting community at the committee's decision to close hunting season down earlier than usual last year, Pepe said "The health of the greater society is the question here. Let the hunters give up a bit of their pleasure for the greater good."
     
    "This is not a disaster scenario"
     
    Pepe moved to reassure worried citizens about the risks Turkey might be facing, saying "This is not a disaster scenario. But we have to take it seriously. We need to be cold-blooded, and to move forward without panicking. I have given my orders to the Hunting Commission regarding a hunting ban, and now it is up to them to proclaim the ban. Our country is not the first country to see this bird flu. We need to analyze what steps other countries have taken in the face of bird flu, and whether they were effective. We need to inform our citizens of the truth, and we need to take action and remain calm."
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