Feature

Deadly pigs

The week's news at a glance.

Beijing

The Chinese government this week forbade newspapers from sending their own reporters to investigate a pig-borne bacterial infection that has killed 36 farmers in Sichuan Province in the past month. All coverage must come from the official state news agency, Xinhua. That agency has been reporting that the illness is spreading only from pig to human, and has not morphed into a more serious human-to-human disease. But international health experts doubt China’s official version. The information ban raised fears that China would once again fail to fully cooperate with international health officials. Beijing’s silence during the early stages of 2003’s SARS epidemic allowed that disease to spread.

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