The director of a major Russian laboratory has denied his institute is the source of a smallpox vaccine that is thought to have wiped out thousands of sheep in Central Asia.
Denis Kolbasov, who heads the Research Institute for Veterinary Virology and Microbiology in Russia, says the vaccine in question is a counterfeit that has been mislabeled as his lab's product.
Uzbek and Kyrgyz farmers and officials said on September 24 that thousands of sheep had died in those countries after receiving vaccines that appeared to come from Kolbasov's institution in the town of Pokrov.
Kolbasov said later the same day that his organization had not distributed the vaccine to Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan this year, adding that the samples sent to his lab from Uzbekistan looked fake.
He said neither the product's packaging nor its content corresponded to a product from his lab.
Kolbasov added that he was unable to say what caused the mass deaths.
Uzbek farmers and officials say thousands of sheep died in the Qashqadariyo, Samarkand, and Jizakh regions after allegedly receiving a tainted smallpox vaccine.
In Kyrgyzstan, authorities in the southern region of Jalal-Abad were probing the deaths of 1,700 sheep, also following their vaccination for smallpox. Authorities have sealed off Jalal-Abad's Suzaq and Aksy districts to try and limit the chances of the danger spreading.
Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Uzbek and Kyrgyz services
- ASIAROC commits to providing humanitarian aid
- ASIAUN chief calls for stronger cooperation from Southeast Asian countries to tackle global crises
- ASIAPM condemns attack on Akram Durrani's convoy
- ASIAUN urges concerted action to create world where women, girls live free from violence
- ASIAPakistan urges humanitarian approachto resolve refugee crisis;Denialof asylum toMuslims morallywrong
Most Viewed News
- 1RUSSIAN JET DOWNINGChina’s attitude towards Turkey's downing of a Russian fighter jet
- 2ASIAChina urges coordination after Turkey downs Russian jet
- 3EUROPEFrance to send 300 special forces to Congo
- 4RUSSIAN JET DOWNING'Nightmare' scenario looms over Syria
- 5RUSSIAN JET DOWNINGTurkish military board convenes after military escalation with Russia