DUBAI, Jan. 4 (Xinhua) -- The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Thursday issued a ban on the import of live birds from the Netherlands where an outbreak of H5N8 avian flu was confirmed, UAE state news agency WAM reported.
Based on a notification from the World Organization for Animal Health of the H5N8 outbreak in the Flevoland province of the Netherlands, the ban includes all "non-heat-treated by-products" of live birds, ornamental birds, chicks and hatching eggs, said the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment.
The outbreak led so far to destroying more than 150,000 chickens in the province, said WAM.
However, the ministry added that thermally treated poultry products (meat and eggs) from all parts of the Netherlands have been cleared for import to the Gulf Arab state.
Majid Sultan Al-Qassimi, assistant Under-Secretary for the Food Diversity Sector of the ministry, said "in doing so, the ministry prevents bird flu and related risks and their impacts on the country's poultry health and safety, in addition to protecting public health and well-being."
Samples of food products from shipments are transferred to laboratories for necessary tests to ensure they are safe and fit to enter the country, the ministry said.
On Dec. 24, 2017, the UAE imposed another ban on poultry import from Saudi Arabia following a reported outbreak of H5N8 in Saudi capital of Riyadh.