Wednesday, June 29, 2011

UN declares deadly cattle plague eradicated after global campaign

The United Nations declared that the world has completely eradicated a cattle disease that has killed millions of bovines for millennia. It is the first animal disease to be officially declared eradicated -- and only the second disease ever, after smallpox.

A resolution approved by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) at its meeting in Rome today stated that the world was free of rinderpest, or cattle plague, but also "called on the world community to follow up by ensuring that samples of rinderpest viruses and vaccines be kept under safe laboratory conditions and that rigorous standards for disease surveillance and reporting be applied."

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