Bird Flu Spreading Across Europe
Bird flu may become entrenched throughout parts of Europe, the United Nations recently reported. The statement came after German scientists discovered the fatal h5n1 strain of the avian influenza virus in seemingly healthy ducks and geese. The fact that German waterfowl may be acting as transmitters of the disease without showing symptoms presents an increased threat to human health, the Food and Agriculture Organization (fao) of the UN reported Oct. 25, 2007.
The spread of avian influenza by birds resistant to the disease has already caused it to become entrenched in some Southeast Asian nations. If the birds do not show symptoms of the disease, infected birds are almost impossible to isolate or eradicate. Because of this, the fao has warned that Europe should prepare for more outbreaks.
“After Asia and Africa, Europe may become the third continent where the h5n1 strain could become endemic,” the fao warned (Reuters, Oct. 25, 2007).
The h5n1 strain is the most deadly form of bird flu that infects humans. It has been fatal in 204 of the 332 recorded human cases; millions of birds have died or been destroyed. In addition to the destruction that an avian flu epidemic would wreak on the European poultry industry, the risk to human health cannot be ignored.
The 1918 Spanish flu that killed 40 million people was a type of avian influenza. Health experts fear that the h5n1 strain will mutate to a form that can be transmitted human to human. Lee Jong-Wook, late director general of the World Health Organization, stated that “It is only a matter of time before an avian-flu virus—most likely h5n1—acquires the ability to be transmitted from human to human, sparking the outbreak of human pandemic influenza. We don’t know when this will happen. But we do know that it will happen” (Nov. 7, 2005).
“It seems that a new chapter in the evolution of avian influenza may be unfolding silently in the heart of Europe,” said Joseph Domenech, chief veterinary officer of fao in October.
Time will tell, but we can be certain that biblical prophecies of severe pandemics in the end time will be fulfilled soon.