Three Mutations Away from a Flu Pandemic

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | MAY 9, 2012

The way to hell is paved with good intentions. This is the least that can be said about the creation of the most virulent form of H5N1 flu virus in two labs in the US and Holland. It is one of those cases where the medicine is worse than the disease. After lots of celebrations and pats on the backs, scientists revealed that their experiments to mutate the H5N1 flu virus had been successful, and the results had been replicated by different groups in Europe and the United States. What they didn’t seem to realize was that the results of those experiments, just as it happens with any other relevant scientific research, would have to be published to the medical community and then the public. Their satisfaction with the results of the experiments, or perhaps their incompetence, blinded them until some sense came back to them. Then came the censorship.

Initially, the procedures used to produce the mutated bird flu virus were blocked from the public as warnings were issued about the potential that so-called terrorists got a hold of the experiments and produced weaponized flu to spread it around cities with dense populations. Amazingly, that is exactly what the scientists did. They created a bioweapon in a lab, confirmed the results by replicating them in different labs, provided the findings to insiders in the scientific community and government officials, and now, they published the results out so anyone can take them, replicate them and create a pandemic.

The head scientist and virologist Yoshihiro Kawaoka, who works at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the University of Tokyo, confirmed that it only took three changes made to the main gene of the virus to enhance it with the capacity to ‘jump’ from animal mammals to humans. Kawaoka and his team confirmed that after implementing the changes on the gene, the virus was easily and effectively transmissible among mammals. The final result of the research was a hybrid virus that would contaminate populations as fast as the air can carry it all over the planet. It doesn’t get anything easier than that, does it? After obtaining the new virus, the researchers injected it in ferrets where mutations in the gene called hemagglutinin — the H part of the H5N1 name — did the rest.

According to research, one of the mutations observed in the hybrid virus is similar to another found in the virus that affects areas of the world such as the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa, where it has killed at least 345 patients without even being weaponized. The 345 number accounts for cases reported as deaths caused by the virus or complications, although many other cases have been left out or simply not reported. Scientist allege that the work performed on the H5N1 virus was necessary in order to learn about it and how it could potentially evolve during a pandemic. They believe that after the first mutation seen in the Middle East, Africa and Asia, the virus will continue to change and that their experiments and results may help save many lives because there will be time to produce a vaccine to fight it. Does anyone see economic intere$t written all over it? This is the big $; I mean S in Health that few people realize the experiment is all about. As if the danger of a weaponized virus transmissible from other mammals to humans wasn’t dangerous enough, the pathogen also has the capacity to ‘jump’ from human to human, just as other flu strains.

The issue with human-made crisis such as the hybrid, lab-made H5N1 virus is that scientists have not figured out a cure to the infection it would cause, only a treatment for an ever changing organism, which only ensures that people will have to use vaccines and other medications for the rest of their lives and still be behind in the game. Not even the scientific inability to measure whether a virus like the H5N1 has the potential or not to become and out of control human transmissible virus was enough to stop well-financed scientists from creating quite a monstrosity. “Our study shows that relatively few amino acid mutations are sufficient for a virus with an avian H5 hemagglutinin to acquire the ability to transmit in mammals,” Kawaoka said.

Yushihiro Kawaoka’s paper, was published in the journal Nature. His is one of two papers around which scientists, government officials and biosecurity experts were debating about before the results were finally put out. Most of the opposition came from the  U.S. National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity, an organization that protested the publication on national security grounds. Those in favor of publishing the results contrasted the public health concerns with a statement that said it was critical to share information in order to harmonize the analysis and response to flu epidemics or pandemics. Everyone else’s hunch is that the people concerned with sharing information are more interested in keeping the money flow going that allows them to finance their research. But scientists said that it was necessary to keep an eye on H5N1 natural changes and what they meant to the scientific community and the public.

Kawaoka’s research has earned him the rock star treatment from colleagues, a dangerous state of affairs if one thinks what can unlimited financing and genius do when they are off the leash. Back in 2003, China directly blamed the U.S. for the death of Chinese people who died after being infected with a violent strain of SARS. Back then, China floated the idea that the SARS virus was the product of a lab experiment that resulted in a bioweapon, a virus that was race specific. Other reports from main stream media even adventured expectations about the H5N1 airborne virus that Kawaoka and his colleagues produced in their labs. Another scientist, Ron Fouchier, who will also published the results of his experiments after the Dutch government allowed him to do so, announced his achievement just last week. His experiment will be published on the scientific magazine Science at a time that is still to be determined. As in many occasions, the US government was the top financier of the experiments conducted by Kawaoka.

The consequences of the artificial creation or mutation of viruses is well-known by the scientific community. The 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic was a result from the games played by scientists who created a hybrid virus with a mutated hemagglutinin gene from H5N1 that fused to the seven remaining genes from the H1N1 virus. Back then, scientists did not create a cure to the potential pandemic and the pharmaceutical industry heavily benefited by offering a useless and dangerous vaccine that hadn’t even been tested properly and which was linked to hundreds of side effects and allergic reactions not disclosed by the makers. Despite the unknowns, both government officials all over the world and pharmaceutical companies themselves guaranteed the safety of the vaccine and justified the absence of valid human trials on the unexpected appearance of the H1N1 virus. Vaccine makers multiplied their average earnings of $50 billion dollars a year as a direct result of the sale of the vaccines, which were purchased by governments with taxpayer money. In 2009, the people of the world were once again the subjects of a worldwide experiment performed under the pretense that it was necessary to learn how much would the correct dosage be for humans. It is important to remember that vaccine makers are immune against legal action should a person determined to have been damaged by a vaccine decide to sue for damages.

“It really is a wonderful study,” said Richard Webby, director of a World Health Organization collaborating center that focuses on studies of animal and bird influenza viruses at St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. The World Health Organization itself was one of many entities that paraded around the world pushing people to buy and inject themselves with the H1N1 vaccine to prevent the much feared pandemic. In mid 2009, the U.S. agreed to spend at least $1 billion in flu vaccine production, which makes one wonder how much of that money went to finance experiments such as the one conducted by Kawaoka and his team.

Although he did not show proof of it, Webby said that mutations like the ones that transformed the H5N1 virus into a biological weapon may not occur in the wild. Of course, no one is counting on the virus to reach the virulent pandemic level by itself, now that it has been aided by out of control scientists. He said that viruses such as the one produced in a lab by Kawaoka require changes in functions the field has known for some time are key for avian flu viruses to make the leap to be able to infect humans. “Those include changing the type of cell receptors the viruses bind to, from receptors that are typically found in people only deep in the lungs to ones found in the upper respiratory tract, where human flu viruses attach.”

Other scientists like Webby see the research as a valuable piece of work that will help experts study the mutation mechanism of the virus, which they say, turns it more efficient when spreading from mammal-to-mammal. One of those scientists is Adolfo Garcia-Sastre, a flu virologist who works at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. Although a warning for the potential mass infection has been issued by the scientists themselves, Garcia-Sastre says that the virus may not transmit that easily among humans. He believes that Kawaoka’s work will help scientists pick out viruses that present mutations from those that do not have them in order to study them and come up with solutions to a pandemic threat. This is, though, if the scientists studying them intend to actually help humans avoid such pandemic. The problem with his premise is that the system in place utilized to monitor the behaviours of viruses and other pathogens is rather poor. This deficiency in the monitoring grows exponentially if one takes into account that changes made to viruses in labs can go undetected for a long time, perhaps up until the moment it is released into the air. In a lab environment, where money and time are unlimited, scientists can deal with unsolved problems, tie all the loose ends and achieve any desired result just as Kawaoka did. For example, missing genes can be added or taken out to affect the virulence and the type of living thing it would be most effective on.

If anything positive has come out of this scientific development is the fact that flu scientists and others who seek to play God with dangerous forms of life like viruses and bacteria will be directly under the microscope as they come up with new ways to teach themselves how to create bioweapons for research purposes and for biowarfare. Richard Webby, from the WHO believes that the outcome will end in more monitoring for the kind of research completed by scientists all over the world. ”There’s certainly going to be more paperwork. But in the long run it’s surely going to be a whole lot easier than what we’ve just been through since December of last year.” Sure, but what stops a scientist, or for that matter any other professional, from lying about experimental results to carry out his or her dream to be recognized or to obtain more funding for their signature life project? One only needs to look at climate science (Climategate, hockey stick, rising sea level) in order to find an answer to this question. Or perhaps if you don’t want to go that far, what stops a pharmaceutical company or government controlled entity from carrying out experiments out in the open? Remember Tuskegee?

I guess it all comes down to trust. Do we trust our fame-thirsty scientists or the pharmaceutical companies that hire them or the governments that experimented on humans without their consent?… and continue to do it today?

Bill Gates Favors Death Panels and Vaccines for Depopulation

by Theodora Filis
UK Progressive
February 16, 2012

When Bill Gates, founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which provides vaccines to third world countries, promoted decreasing the population of the world and favoring the ‘death panel’, it shocked many people. Bill Gates believes that “instead of spending millions of dollars on old people who just have months to live, the money should be spent elsewhere, where it can actually benefit people”.

Two years ago, the Microsoft billionaire, unveiled his mission to reduce the world’s population through vaccines during a TEDx presentation. As Gates rambles on about CO2 emissions, and its effects on climate change, he injects without pause, that in order to get CO2 to zero, “probably one of these numbers is going to have to get pretty close to zero.” He then goes on to describe how the first number, P (for People) might be reduced.

“The world today has 6.8 billion people”, said Gates, “that’s headed up to about 9 billion. Now if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 10 or 15 percent.”

In January 2010, at the Davos World Economic Forum, Gates announced his foundation would give $10 billion (€7.5 billion) over the next decade to develop and deliver new vaccines to children in the developing world.

For those who haven’t figured it out, the primary focus of the Gates Foundation is vaccinations, especially in Africa and other underdeveloped countries. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is a founding member of the GAVI Alliance (Global Alliance for Vaccinations and Immunization) in partnership with the World Bank, WHO and the vaccine industry. The goal of GAVI is to vaccinate every newborn child in the developing world.

How could that be a bad thing? Sounds like noble philanthropic work, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, the vaccine industry has been repeatedly caught forcing dangerous (unsafe, untested or proven harmful) vaccines onto Third World populations – vaccines they cannot get rid of in the West. Some organizations have suggested that the true aim of the vaccinations is to make people sicker and even more susceptible to disease and premature death.

 

Back in May of 2009, The London Times reported that some of the “richest people in the world met in New York to discuss their favorite causes”. The group, which included such notables as Bill Gates, David Rockefeller, Ted Turner, Oprah Winfrey, Warren Buffett, George Soros and Michael Bloomberg, decided, during that meeting, their money would best be spent on reducing the world’s population.

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World Bank Depopulation Plans Make Sense Now

by Luis R. Miranda
The Real Agenda
February 16, 2012

Sometimes reality can stare you in the face, but you can’t see it. This is true today more than ever, even for those who fancy themselves as having an understanding of reality. The clearest example is with the masses, that seem to live in a “version of reality” that does not represent the real world. Their world is full of emptiness, distractions and selfishness. Many of us grew up inside this fake alternative version of reality, and it is hard to leave it. Millions of people have been successful in their attempt to leave the “other version” of reality and entering the real world, but most have failed. Failing to see reality has a lot to do with the human incapacity to see beyond the nose, to realize things may be different, and many times even having the knowledge isn’t enough to break loose.

Yesterday we reported on how the World Bank, together with other international organizations are responsible for promoting and carrying out a depopulation program which seeks to bring the number of human inhabitants to less than 10% of the current number. They have been implementing this program for decades now, and the efforts have been directed mainly to the underdeveloped and developing world. Their plans include sterilization of the people through modern medicine, chemicals in the food and water and population reduction plain and simple through warfare, economic policies and so on.

Unless one looks carefully at history, it is difficult to realize how these organizations have successfully carried out their agendas. But the common denominator is control. What good, or in this case bad policy does when it can’t be enforced? The people who want to get rid of humans, at least most of them, control the World Bank, the UN, the World Health Organization, the World Trade Organization and effectively also control the corporations which in turn dominate the governments and politicians. Indirectly, they control the educational systems, they write history to their liking, implement health, financial, environmental and demographic policies and are responsible for making sure those policies are followed at the local, and national levels without the necessary consultation to Congress or the people.

In the case of the World Bank, as we showed yesterday, it has its own plan to reduce the number of people on this planet. Many of the policies the Bank promotes appear in what it calls the World Development Report. This document has been issued once a year at least since the mid 1970′s. But how could the World Bank come up with and implement depopulation practices in many different countries? It is necessary to have people in all places, who directly or otherwise agree with such policies. It is also necessary to have people who write the policies and who pass them on to their accomplices in each nation. Although the supposed overpopulation is nothing other than a myth, many people genuinely believe the planet is out of breath when it comes to sustaining 7 billion people. Facts show a different story, though. As we have reported before, the overpopulation myth came out of Thomas Malthus’ ill-conceived theories that compared food availability and population growth. In fact, the World Bank’s 1984 World Development Report cites Malthus’ ideas as the cornerstone for global depopulation.

So how have the globalists behind the depopulation initiative been able to achieve such a goal so far? They have used the economic and military machinery from the 7 or 8 most powerful countries in the world. Specifically, the United States has been as bastion in their efforts to decrease the number of undesirables, useless eaters, as they call us. One particular detail — this is what I’ve unconsciously missed all this time — is that since its inception, the World Bank has been managed by an American politician or elitist. From Eugene Mayer to Paul Wolfowitz, every single head of the infamous organization has been a US citizen. If we connect the dots, we can easily learn that additionally to controlling the World Bank through the US, the globalists — also through the US — established another set of policies on behalf not of the World Bank, but the US itself, to use all means necessary to reduce the world’s population. I am obviously talking about the National Security Study Memorandum 200: Implications of Worldwide Population Growth for U.S. Security and Overseas Interests (NSSM200) . This document was written under and least sponsored by Henry Kissinger, who back in 1974 was the US National Security Advisor.

So if a government as powerful as the US decided at the time that reducing population would be an official policy as the National Security Memorandum 200 revealed, one can only conclude that having a strong position in the World Bank would greatly help that effort. Today we know it did. But the United States influence in reducing population is not limited to the World Bank. Traditionally, it’s had its way in other agencies such as the World Trade Organization, the World Health Organization and of course the UN.

This week, the corporate media reported that Hillary Clinton seems to be the strongest replacement for Robert Zoellick, the current head of the World Bank who has announced his retirement. Clinton has progressively leaked her desire to leave Barack Obama’s cabinet to pursue other projects, and it seems those projects don’t include running for president of the United States — for now. Meantime, China has jumped to publicly oppose Clinton’s arrival to the presidency of the World Bank, a position that is more valuable than occupying the White House. Along with all the powers vested under the position of president of the globalist organization, there are a list of unrevealed tasks which include finger pointing who the presidents of the European countries are, a decision that just as it happens in the case of the US, is usually concocted during the Bilderberg meeting. The chinese have said that the next president of the World Bank should be someone who has earned it, a person with merit, and that the choice shouldn’t be based on nationality.

But the United States will not give away another opportunity to control world economic affairs, a tradition on its own. Clinton is only one of the American choices. Along with her is Larry Summers, also an American who served as a White House economic adviser. Summers is also a supporter of the idea of depopulating the planet. “It is very important that we continue to have strong, effective leadership in this important institution,” said the current head of the US Treasury, Timothy Geithner. According to the Associated Press, just as the World Bank president has always been an American, the IMF has always had an European head.

“We must help break the link between spiraling population growth and poverty….Where they have been tried, family planning programs have largely worked. Many pro-life advocates .. . contend that to condone abortion even implicitly is morally unconscionable. Their view is morally shortsighted. . ..if we provide funds for birth control . . .we will prevent the conception of millions of babies who would be doomed to the devastation of poverty in the underdeveloped world,” said Richard M. Nixon about the US’s new policy back then. “…a definitive interagency study of the threat of overpopulation to U.S. security … NSSM 200 details how and why world population growth threatens U.S. and global security.”

Henry Kissinger, later wrote: “Depopulation should be the highest priority of U.S. foreign policy towards the Third World.”

“Depopulation policy became the top priority under the NSC agenda, Club of Rome and U.S. policymakers like Gen. Alexander Haig, Cyrus Vance, Ed Muskie and Kissinger. According to an NSC spokesman at the time, the United States shared the view of former World Bank President Robert McNamara that the “population crisis” is a greater threat to U.S. national security interests than nuclear annihilation.In 1975, Henry Kissinger established a policy-planning group in the U.S. State Department’s Office of Population Affairs. The depopulation “GLOBAL 2000″ document for President Jimmy Carter was prepared. It is no surprise that this policy was established under President Carter with help from Kissinger and Brzezinski – all with ties to David Rockefeller. The Bush family, the Harriman family – the Wall Street business partners of Bush in financing Hitler – and the Rockefeller family are the elite of the American eugenics movement,” reports Leuren Moret.

“There is a single theme behind all our work-we must reduce population levels,” said Thomas Ferguson, the Latin American case officer for the State Department’s Office of Population Affairs (OPA). “Either they [governments] do it our way, through nice clean methods or they will get the kind of mess that we have in El Salvador, or in Iran, or in Beirut. Population is a political problem. Once population is out of control it requires authoritarian government, even fascism, to reduce it. “The professionals,” said Ferguson, “aren’t interested in lowering population for humanitarian reasons. That sounds nice. We look at resources and environmental constraints. We look at our strategic needs, and we say that this country must lower its population – or else we will have trouble”.

The depopulation policies go beyond a single agency or organization. In fact, depopulation is worked through multiple organizations in order to carry out more effectively. According to Sott.net, depopulation includes practices such as hunger. “Two thirds of the world’s 1 billion starving people live in Asia, where the lack of water has resulted in unprecedented food shortages that threaten the continent’s ability to feed its growing population. Elsewhere, weird weather – chronic drought in Australia, Argentina and Kenya, excessive rain in the northeastern US, freezing summer temperatures in Canada – is contributing to the perfect storm of rising food prices and increasing scarcity, an unfolding disaster of truly pandemic proportions.”

But in most cases, famine and poverty are not consequences of overpopulation, but the manipulation of water, soil, food and other resources. One clear example is the food exchange markets, where speculators buy and sell corn, soy, and other food staples as if they were stocks. They do this not because they want to buy the food, but because there is money to make in the process of buying and selling those food crops. Most of the contracts for deliveries aren’t even completed because most buyers sell their purchases to the best bidder as soon as they see an opportunity to make a buck. And what do the traders have to say about this? “I never think about the scarcity or speculation issue when I’m on the floor.” While millions of people die of thirst or have to pay premium prices for their water supply, large food conglomerates bribe governments to acquire the water resources in many countries so then they can sell it for 3 or 4 dollars a bottle of 350ml. This situation is shown in the documentary film FLOW: Love for Water.

So the practice of depopulation either through sterilization, famine, medication, intoxication, monopolistic practices or warfare has found a fertile place in the global organizations our governments trust or follow orders from. In fact, they were created to carry out depopulation at a large scale. The practice of depopulation makes sense now. It is a concerted effort to slowly but surely get rid of as many humans as possible for the sake of whatever the controllers say it is. The problem for them is we’ve found out.


Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreak Sickens 32,000 in Vietnam

By Margie Mason
The Associated Press
August 19, 2011

HANOI, Vietnam — Vietnam’s prime minister has put the country on alert as an outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease continues to surge, killing 81 children and sickening more than 32,000 people nationwide so far this year, officials said Friday.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has called for stepped-up efforts to prevent and control the transmission of the common childhood disease. It has spread nationwide but is raging hardest in the country’s south, where nearly 80 percent of the cases have been reported. About 65 percent of the deaths have occurred in children younger than 3.

“Hand foot and mouth disease, a dangerous infectious disease for children under 5, is spreading fast, creating huge danger to the health and life of young children,” Dung said in a statement that appeared on the government’s website Friday.

This year’s outbreak is a sharp increase over previous years. Since 2008, about 10,000 to 15,000 cases were reported per year, with about 20 to 30 children dying annually.

Hand, foot and mouth disease is spread by sneezing, coughing and contact with fluid from blisters or infected feces. It is caused by a group of enteroviruses in the same family as polio. No vaccine or specific treatment exists, but illness is typically mild and most children recover quickly without problems.

The virus gets its name from the telltale symptoms it causes, including rash, mouth sores and blisters covering the hands and feet. Many infected children are not sickened at all, but remain capable of spreading it to others.

A more severe strain called enterovirus 71, or EV-71, has been identified in about a third of the sampled cases in Vietnam, said Dr. Graham Harrison, the World Health Organization’s acting country representative for Vietnam. EV-71 can result in paralysis, brain swelling and death.

Harrison urged greater awareness at clinics and hospitals outside cities in detecting and treating new cases. Early symptoms include fever and sore throat, with the rash and blisters coming later in most, but not all, patients.

He said there’s been a slight decrease recently in the number of cases, but it’s too soon to know for sure whether the outbreak is waning. State media have reported about 2,000 new cases are still being logged every week.

“It started picking up in May or June like it had in previous years,” Harrison said. “Whether it’s going to go down and come back up or has just sort of peaked for the year and will then go down, we’ll have to wait and see.”

Dr. Truong Huu Khanh, head of the infectious disease department at Ho Chi Minh City’s main children’s hospital, said the number of patients has decreased compared to a month ago. He added that most children being admitted are now coming from southern provinces outside the city.

WHO is assisting with the outbreak along with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They are urging enhanced hygiene, including frequent hand washing and regularly cleaning floors, tables and counters with disinfectant.

New E. Coli strain: Combination of two different E. Coli bacteria

Genetic sequencing suggests it is more virulent and toxin-producing

By Maria Cheng
AP
June 2, 2011

An entirely new super-toxic bug is causing the frightening food poisoning outbreak that has sickened at least 1,600 people and killed 18, researchers and global health officials said Thursday.

The DNA of the new E. coli strain, believed to have contaminated salad vegetables, was analyzed by Chinese and German scientists. It contains several genes that cause antibiotic resistance and is similar to a strain that causes serious diarrhea and is found in the Central African Republic, according to a statement from the Shenzhen, China-based laboratory, BGI. Those scientists were working together with the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf.

“This is a unique strain that has never been isolated from patients before,” Hilde Kruse, a food safety expert at the World Health Organization, told The Associated Press. The new strain has “various characteristics that make it more virulent and toxin-producing” than the many E. coli strains people naturally carry in their intestines.

Preliminary genetic sequencing suggests the strain is a never before seen combination of two different E. coli bacteria, with aggressive genes that could explain why the outbreak appears to be so massive and dangerous, the agency said.

Researchers have so far been unable to pinpoint the food source of the illness, which has now spread to at least 10 European countries and fanned uncertainty about eating tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce. The germ has caused 499 to develop a kidney failure complication. Germany is hardest hit.

Fearful of the outbreak spreading east to Russia, the country extended a ban on vegetables to the entire European Union from just Germany and Spain, a move the bloc quickly called disproportionate.

Kruse said it’s not uncommon for bacteria to continually mutate, evolving and swapping genes. It is difficult to explain where the new strain came from, she said, but strains of bacteria from both humans and animals easily trade genes, similar to how animal viruses like Ebola sometimes jump into humans.

“One should think of an animal source,” Kruse said. “Many animals are hosts of various types of toxin-producing E. coli.” Some scientists suspect the deadly E. coli might have originated in contaminated manure used to fertilize vegetables.

Previous E. coli outbreaks have mainly hit children and the elderly, but the European outbreak is disproportionately affecting adults, especially women. Kruse said there might be something particular about the bacteria strain that makes it more dangerous for adults.

But she cautioned that since people with milder cases probably aren’t seeking medical help, officials don’t know just how big the outbreak is. “It’s hard to say how virulent (this new E. coli strain) is because we just don’t know the real number of people affected.”

Nearly all the sick people either live in Germany or recently traveled there. British officials announced four new cases, including three Britons who recently visited Germany and a German person on holiday in England.

The WHO recommends that to avoid food-borne illnesses people wash their hands before eating or cooking food, separating raw and cooked meat from other foods, thoroughly cooking food, and washing fruits and vegetables, especially if eaten raw. Experts also recommend peeling raw fruits and vegetables if possible.

Russia had earlier this week banned fresh imports from Spain and Germany, but it expanded the ban Thursday to include the entire EU. The United Arab Emirates issued a temporary ban on cucumbers from Spain, Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands.

Lyubov Voropayeva, spokeswoman for the Russian Agency for the Supervision of Consumer Rights, told the AP the Russian ban has been imposed immediately and indefinitely. No fatalities or infections have yet been reported in Russia.

“How many more lives of European citizens does it take for European officials to tackle this problem?” the agency’s chief Gennady Onishchenko said to the state-owned RIA Novosti news agency.

Frederic Vincent, a spokesman for the EU’s Health and Consumer Policy Commissioner John Dalli, said Thursday that the European Commission would write to Russia to demand further clarification. The Italian farmers association Coldiretti criticized the ban as “absurd.”

One expert said the fact the strain is new may have complicated the response to the outbreak. “Officials may not have had the correct tests to detect it, which may explain the initial delay in reporting,” said Paul Hunter, a professor of health protection at the University of East Anglia in England.

He said the number of new cases would likely slow to a trickle in the next few days. The incubation period for this type of E. coli is about three to eight days, and most people recover within 10 days.

“Salads have a relatively short shelf life and it’s likely the contaminated food would have been consumed in one to two weeks,” Hunter said.

But Hunter warned the outbreak could continue if there is secondary transmission of the disease, which often happens when children are infected. The disease can be spread when infected people don’t take proper hygiene measures, like bathing or hand washing..

Phil Tarr, a professor of molecular microbiology at Washington University, said the discovery of a new strain wasn’t particularly significant scientifically.

“Every strain is a mutant, if you define mutant as an organism that has picked up DNA from another source,” he said. He said more analysis was needed to find out more about the strain’s origins, how long it’s been around and its ability to make people sick.

Meanwhile, Spain’s prime minister slammed the European Commission and Germany for early on singling out the country’s produce as a possible source of the outbreak, and said the government would demand explanations and reparations.

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero told Spanish National Radio that the German federal government was ultimately responsible for the allegations, adding that Spain would seek “conclusive explanations and sufficient reparations.”

Spanish farmers say the accusations have devastated their credibility and exports. In Valencia, protesting farmers dumped some 300 kilos (700 pounds) of fruit and vegetables — cabbage, tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and other produce — outside the German consulate.

The outbreak is already considered the third-largest involving E. coli in recent world history, and it may be the deadliest. Twelve people died in a 1996 Japanese outbreak that reportedly sickened more than 9,000, and seven died in a 2000 Canadian outbreak.

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