Nine people are now known to have died of avian influenza in Indonesia. The human population of Indonesia is approximately 240 million.
Masato Tashiro, of the World Health Organization, has told New Scientist that he believes the three officially reported deaths from avian influenza in China are just the ‘tip of the iceberg’. He is reported to have said earlier that he believed the true figure to be more like 300. The population of China is around 1.3 billion.
In the entire world about 100 people are known to have died of the disease. If we take Masato Tashiro at his word somewhat less than 500 people are known to have died. The population of the world is almost 6.5 billion.
There are no confirmed cases of avian influenza being passed from one human being to another.
Need one really say any more about this threat to life as we know it other than to suggest that someone, somewhere, seems to be lacking a working sense of proportion?
Posted 13 December 2005, 23:20 GMT