Three new cases of the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu have been detected in poultry on farms in the west African nation of Togo, a report said Saturday. The new cases were found in dead birds on farms in the Lacs, Golfe and Zio regions east of the capital Lome, national television reported.
In late June, testing confirmed the presence for the first time in Togo of the H5N1 strain in poultry in Sigbehoue, 45 kilometres (30 miles) east of the capital.
About 8,000 poultry birds were slaughtered in the area and local poultry markets were closed. Togolese authorities also stepped up controls on poultry imports.
Togo in October of last year banned the import of live poultry and poultry products from countries affected by the virus.
Worldwide, the virus has killed 191 people out of 313 infected patients since reappearing in late 2003, according to a World Health Organisation toll dated June 15.
Experts fear the death toll could multiply rapidly if the virus were to mutate and become easily transmitted between humans.