Africa: Mystery disease kills 250

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The Independent Online
Ten days after it was first reported, health authorities in Kenya are still struggling to identify a mysterious epidemic which has killed 250 people in the flood-stricken north-east.

Symptoms include fever, headaches and haemorrhaging from body orifices, symptoms identified in thousands of livestock also reported to have died in recent days. The Kenyan representative of the World Health Organisation, Dr Douglas Klaucke, said the authorities now believe the disease could be caused by anthrax, a bacterium tested by several countries - including Britain - for use in germ warfare. But he stressed that the samples were still being tested for Rift Valley fever.