China, the world’s second largest poultry consumer has temporarily banned sales of live poultry in several cities after an outbreak of a highly pathogenic bird flu virus was reported in central Hunan province.
According to the Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 20 people have been infected and five people have died from the H7N9 avian influenza.
Although major cities have barred trading of live birds due to bird flu infection to humans reported in 2013, smaller towns and cities in the country still operate live poultry markets.
Temporarily closed markets include several markets such as Changsha and Yueyang.
Since 2016, more than 100 cases were reported in China. Experts have warned that the virus is most likely to continue spreading.