There is a direct relationship with viruses found in Russia, Mongolia and China. The EU also said samples from birds in Romania came back positive for bird flu, and scientists have narrowed the strain to an H5 type virus.
Veterinary experts were meeting Thursday to try to determine the exact strain in Romania. Kyprianou said the European Commission was proposing to set aside 1 billion (US$1.2 billion) to help make and distribute anti-virals and vaccines Ğin case of a pandemic.
He advised EU countries to administer the standard flu vaccine to vulnerable populations. EU Health Ministers were to hold urgent talks on the outbreaks at talks in England next week.