South Korea issues nationwide standstill order to contain bird flu outbreak

South Korea has issued a nationwide standstill order in a bid to contain a bird flu outbreak.

The country's agriculture ministry implemented the temporary order for poultry farms and related transport on Saturday in a bid to contain a wider spread of highly pathogenic flu.

For 48-hours, the nation will be placed under the movement control order which started from Friday midnight, 3:00pm GMT.

This means all poultry arms and livestock production facilities, including their vehicles and personnel will be affected, the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs said in a statement.

The movement comes as the number of highly pathogenic bird flu cases at poultry farms rose to 10 on Friday since late November.

The country reported its first highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of bird flu in wild birds in October in Cheonan-si, Chungcheongnam-do, about 84 km (52 miles) west of Seoul, according to the agriculture ministry.

It comes amid heightened tension between the Korea's as last week Kang Kyung-wha, the Foreign Minister of South Korea, rubbished North Korea's claims of zero Covid-19 cases.

Kang told the annual IISS Manama Dialogue Security Conference: "They still say they don’t have any cases, which is hard to believe.

"All signs are that the regime is very intensely focused on controlling the disease that they say they don’t have, so it’s a bit of an odd situation."

Kim Jong-un's sister Kim Yo-jong has slammed a South Korean Foreign Minister and insists the official will "pay dearly" for her "reckless remarks" about North Korea, it has been reported.

In a statement published by the state-run Korean Central News Agency, Kim was quoted as saying: "It can be seen from the reckless remarks made by her without any consideration of the consequences that she is too eager to further chill the frozen relations between the north and south of Korea.

"We will never forget her words and she might have to pay dearly for it."

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