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GMS nations join hands in combating communicable diseases
www.chinaview.cn 2005-07-05 21:19:27

    KUNMING, July 5 (Xinhuanet) -- Six countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), including China, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Cambodia, Tuesday pledged to work together in preventand control diseases that threaten either men or animals.

    According to a memorandum of understanding signed Tuesday in Kunming, capital of southwest China's Yunnan Province, the six countries will join together in combating such diseases as malaria, AIDS, avian flu, and foot-and-mouth disease.

    Those diseases have inflicted heavy economic losses on many families in the subregion, posed great threat to local animal farming business, human health, life of many poor families and foreign trade.

    Under the document, the six countries will formulate policies and regulations on cross-border transfer of animals, raise immunity of animals from diseases, create an early-warning system for animal-related diseases, improve construction of veterinarian network, monitoring and diagnosis capability, and strive to build an emergency aid mechanism against an outbreak of cross-border animal diseases.

    Prior to the document, the six countries have also made progress in cooperation in public health field as the new avian flu drug developed by China has been used in Vietnam in April of this year, which helped bring the disease under control as it killed 99.99 percent of avian flu virus in areas hit by the disease.

    Jin Liqun, deputy president of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), GMS members are responding to the threats of infectious diseases, including avian flu and HIV/AIDS, through a regional program of communicable disease control.

    In implementing this program, the poor and vulnerable groups in border areas are given special focus, said the deputy president.

    ADB initiated the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Program in 1992 to boost regional economic cooperation for faster social and economic development in the subregion. Enditem

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