iFlu.org | 22.11.2005 14:45 | Health
Allaemeine, yesterday said that Dr. Masato Tashiro, a Japanese WHO
consultant, believed that China has had 300 human deaths from bird flu and is hiding the true extent of the disease from the rest of the world.
Allaemeine, yesterday said that Dr. Masato Tashiro, a Japanese WHO consultant, believed that China has had 300 human deaths from bird flu and is hiding the true extent of the disease from the rest of the world.
The translated story reports that Dr. Masato Tashiro, director of the WHO Collaborating Center on Influenza at the National Institute of Infectious Diseases, Tokyo, and head of the Department of Virology of the National Institute of Infectious Disease (Japan), astonished colleagues with the information during a speech at a recent retirement dinner for a fellow virologist, Hans-Dieter Klenk.
Having just returned from the Hunan province of China on behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO), the virologist claimed that a reliable source had provided him with details of the true nature of the H5N1 virus in China. "We are systematically deceived" [by China], he is reported to have said. The information is very similar to the translated story from the pro-democracy Chinese site, Boxun, which we published last week. That story has now been given added credibility, and it must be only a matter of time before an English-speaking news agency starts seriously questioning Beijing. Some honesty from China will hopefully follow.
This is iFlu.org's translation of the article:
At first nobody in the hall knew what the numbers could mean. A simple diagram, full of number blocks, which were enclosed by Chinese characters at the left and top margin. People with questions in their eyes. Then virus researcher Masato Tashiro opened his colleagues' eyes. "What you see here, is an unofficial, unpublished report from China for the H5N1 infection situation with humans." A systematic list, which was passed on to him by a reliable source when he entered China a few days ago.
Tashiro was there on behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO) in the Hunan province. His laboratory, at the National institute for Infection Research in Tokyo, had been particularly entrusted as one of the Asian points of contact for the United Nations with investigations to the bird flu in Asia and in China. Now he stood there in lecture room III of the University of Marburg Clinic, before some the most outstanding virologists in the world at the weekend and could obviously not silently release him into his pension. Instead of discharging the German retiring influenza virologist, Hans's Dieter Klenk, he shocked the meeting with his unauthorised data souvenir from inside China.
If the mysterious Chinese informant is certain and what its mysterious informant had noted in the document is correct, the bird flu epidemic disease places all statistics collected so far in China into the shade. Officially the WHO register shows 71 victims worldwide, with about double that figure from close contact with poultry. China indicates just three infected. And so far only one case - doubtfully valid - in which the virus has been transferred by humans to another - a questionable initial scenario for the feared Pandemic. The Chinese medical report now documents several dozen H5N1 infections in the population. Altogether Tashiro claimed "at least three hundred proven deaths in China", more than three thousand humans in isolation stations.
The Japanese virologist firmly believes in the reliability of the source and its data. It's more concerning than the SARS epidemic disease, and he is sure at the same time that the world is left in the dark over the true situation in China. "We are systematically deceived." The secrecy and the repressive-politics of the Peking government is still causing concern as [it was] at the beginning of the SARS epidemic disease, complained Tashiro. China is playing with fire. At least five medical co-workers, who should report on the situation in the provinces were arrested, publication-willing researchers were threatened with punishments. [If] Scarcely eight years before H5N1, for the first time, took some thousand poultry victims and a few humans in Hong Kong, why should the virus not hit China over all these years [too], when Asia is already in their third wave? China has well-known affinity for the feather and chickens. That is not a question to the virologists, but the question of the virologist to the policy used.