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Wed 15 Jul 2009 07:35 AM

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Saudi swine flu cases reach 232

Sixteen new cases of swine flu have been confirmed by Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health.

Sixteen new cases of swine flu have been confirmed by Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health, bringing the total number of cases in the kingdom to 232.

Five of the new H1N1 virus cases were school children from an international school that was closed down by the ministry on Monday.

Dr Khalid Al-Marghalani, a ministry spokesman told the Saudi Gazette: “It is the same school in Riyadh where 20 swine flu cases among its children were detected yesterday (Monday) and the school was temporarily closed.”

The name of the school has not yet been released by authorities.

Health officials have stepped up measures to combat the spread of swine flu and have raised concerns over the increasing number of school children catching the virus, the paper said.

“Since most of the schools are now closed, the Ministry of Health will launch a huge national health awareness campaign right after the holy month of Ramadan,” Dr Marghalani said.

Romulo Israel, of the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh, said the Future Generation International School was closed down for a week after four of its students tested positive for swine flu.

Meanwhile, UAE health officials confirmed all 47 reported cases in the country have been treated and discharged from hospitals.

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