Iraq reported this week six outbreaks of the highly pathogenic H5N1 bird flu virus that occurred between mid-December and early February in the first occurrence of the disease in 10 years, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Tuesday.

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Overall the virus killed 77,101 birds, mostly on farms, prompting the culling of another 641,498 birds as part of protection measures, it said, citing information from Iraq's agriculture ministry.