Swine flu kills 24 in Middle East

Jan. 21, 2013 at 5:56 AM
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RAMALLAH, West Bank, Jan. 21 (UPI) -- Twenty-four people have died of the swine flu in the last month in the Palestinian territories, Jordan and Israel, officials said.

Assad al-Ramlawi, director general of the Healthcare Department in the Palestinian Ministry of Health, said four Palestinians died after contracting the H1N1 virus in the West Bank and Gaza in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 21 since the start of winter, the Saudi Gazette reported.

Ramlawi said 600 people, 30 of them in the Gaza Strip, have been diagnosed with the virus. Most of those who died because of the flu had a weak immune system or an existing illness, he said.

In Jordan, two people died of swine virus this month and 95 cases have been registered with authorities, Ammon News, citing Health Minister Abdullatif Wreikat, reported during the weekend.

In Israel, a 3-year-old boy died of the flu last week and at least four people with the virus, some listed in serious condition, have been hospitalized, an unnamed Health Ministry official told the Tel Aviv newspaper Haaretz. The boy suffered from a chronic illness before he contracted the virus, the official said.

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