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U.S. Navy halts aid vessel trip to South Pacific over flu concerns

International News Brief 6 May 2009
The US navy has postponed an aid mission to the South Pacific after a sailor on the vessel developed H1N1 influenza, commonly known as swine flu, and nearly 50 others sailors on the ship also showed symptoms of the new virus.

The U.S.S. Dubuque was put out of commission after an outbreak of swine flu aboard the vessel.
The U.S.S. Dubuque had been due to depart in early June for Samoa, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Kiribati and the Marshall Islands as part of America's Pacific Partnership humanitarian programme. A US Navy spokesman said officials would be looking at other alternatives to meet the mission's objectives. Earlier, a woman from Texas become the first US resident believed to have died from swine flu. The woman, who lives in Cameron County, close to the US border with Mexico, died earlier this week, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) said.

Confirmed cases of swine flu:
Mexico: 101 suspected deaths - 29 confirmed; 840 confirmed cases
US: Two deaths, 403 confirmed cases
Canada: 140 confirmed cases
Spain: 57 confirmed cases
UK: 27 confirmed cases

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