Following the warning from the Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP) on the resurgence of avian flu (H1N1 virus) in the Dominican Republic (8 cases recognized) and the confirmation of such information by the Haitian diplomatic representation in neighboring Republic, the Ministry of Trade and Industry and Agriculture of the Republic of Haiti, inform the Haitian consumers, users of the Haitian-Dominican border, as well as importers and retailers that import and sale of meat products, particularly poultry, eggs and live animals potentially infected or carriers of bird flu, from the Dominican Republic are prohibited until further order.
The ban takes effect immediately.
In the meantime, the services of the Ministries collect detailed information about the impact of this new outbreak of bird flu, in order to assess the appropriateness of adopting other measures. No cases have been detected so far in Haiti, the country is on high alert, especially in border towns and arrangements are already taken to protect the Haitian population against the virus.So after Trinidad and Tobago worry about "bird flu" in Venezuela, Haiti now worries about "bird flu" in the DR—even when it's clearly an H1N1 outbreak; the Dominicans have been very outspoken about it, especially in the past week, which has seen at least 9 deaths from H1N1.
In response, a Dominican senator has charged the Haitians with acting in bad faith (my translation):
El legislador advirtió que lo que existe a nivel mundial es una alerta epidemiológica ante el peligro de que se desate una pandemia de influenza causada por el virus de tipo A en su variante H1N1 y que esa situación afecta a todos los países, incluyendo a Haití.
The legislator noted that an epidemiological alert is in effect around the world about the influenza pandemic caused by influenza A(H1N1) and that this situation affects all countries, including Haiti.
Señaló que la gripe aviar es causada por las variantes H5 y H7, que no tiene nada que ver con la H1N1, por lo que tilda de "mala fe" la actutud del gobierno haitiano.
He said bird flu is caused by the H5 and H7 strains, which have nothing to do with H1N1, which indicates "bad faith" in the Haitian government's attitude.
Llamó la atención del presidente Danilo Medina para tomar medidas urgentes a favor de los productores, porque esta decisión pudiera representar la tumba de cientos.
He called for President Danilo Medina to take urgent measures to help producers, because the ban could mean the ruin of hundreds.
Además, estimó que esta decisión el gobierno haitiano es una agresión económica injustificada contra el país porque la prohibición no tiene ningún sustento clínico.
As well, he charged that the Haitian government's decision is unjustified economic aggression against the country because the ban has no clinical evidence to support it.
The senator then went on to say rude things about Haitians as exporters of diseases like cholera into the Dominican Republic. Somehow you would think that someone in Port-au-Prince would have a quiet word with MSPP about the differences between H1N1 and real avian influenzas.