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Tue 14 Jul 2009 08:19 AM

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Saudi officials shut school over swine flu cases

International school in Riyadh is closed after as many as 20 cases of H1N1 virus diagnosed.

Saudi Arabian education officials have closed an international school in Riyadh after a number of pupils tested positive for swine flu.

According to a report in the Saudi Gazette, the Future Generation International School for Filipino children was shut for a week, a Philippines Embassy official told the paper.

The paper reported that four cases of the H1N1 virus had been diagnosed at the school, but the Ministry of Health said there were 20 cases.

“We have segregated the infected students and they are currently being treated in a Riyadh hospital,” Dr Khalid Al Mirghalani, Health Ministry spokesman, told Arab News.

The vast majority of international schools in Riyadh have closed for the summer break Moiz Al Qahtani, the supervisor of international schools in Riyadh province, told Arab News, the ministry would “send out circulars to other schools to be alert on the outbreak and advise staff and students to take precautionary measures against the disease.”

Saudi authorities have stepped up efforts to prevent the spread of the swine flu virus. Riyadh is especially concerned because of the upcoming pilgrimage to the holy cities of Mecca and Medina when some two million people are expected to arrive in the city.

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