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Even as evidence that camels are – at least partially – involved in the carriage and transmission of the MERS Coronavirus mounts (see CIDRAP NEWS report WHO sees camels as MERS source, but route uncertain) , the spokesperson for the Saudi Ministry of Agriculture has stated that MERS is essentially not their problem, but the problem of the MOH.
Camels are part of the Saudi national identity. Any restrictions on (or worse, calls for culling of) this ubiquitous symbol of KSA is undoubtedly a `hot potato’ that no one in power is particularly anxious to grasp hold of.
Since it has been well demonstrated that MERS is endemic in camels, the longer that situation goes unresolved, the greater the chance is that we’ll see additional spillovers of the virus into the human population. Making this abdication of responsibility concerning, to say the least.
Two reports on today’s statement:
Speaker "Agriculture": "Corona" of human viruses .. and "health" is responsible for the treatment and eradication of
Said the official spokesman for the Ministry of Agriculture Engineer Jaber monthly virus "Corona" of human diseases not related to animals by pointing out that the treatment and eradication is the responsibility of the Ministry of Health.
He explained that the monthly all cases recorded all mankind, and that the media reported about the existence of traces of "Corona" in the blood of the camel and it's the main source of transmission of the virus is not documented, according to the "city”
A bit more detail comes via this report from HasaToday:
"Agriculture" disclaims all "Corona" .. and afford health
The spokesman said the Ministry of Agriculture, Engineer Jaber Al-Shehri, the Corona virus of human diseases, stressing that the Ministry of Health is responsible for the treatment and eradication.
Regarding the studies that showed no traces "Corona" in the blood of the camels, and in it the main source of transmission of the virus, he pointed out that the monthly all registered cases of all mankind, adding that what the press said in this regard is not documented.
Monthly and refused to comment on whether there is an intention to work quarantine for animals, or removal from the pens of camel populations, and that as reported in the "city."
The spokesman's remarks came Ministry of Agriculture, commenting on a statement infectious disease experts, who confirmed that the camel is the main reason for the transmission of the virus.