Health officials in Mexico believe its swine flu outbreak has peaked, and may be no more severe than normal flu. However, they reported 22 people have now died and more than 500 are affected, and said the world should not lower its guard.
Asia is particularly cautious. Bangkok airport, like others in the region, is screening air travellers, separating those suspected of having the virus, especially arrivals from Mexico. It’s been been called discrimination; the authorities say they’re just being prudent. And with good reason, as cases continue to appear around the world. Colombia has become the 18th country, the first in South America, to confirm a sufferer, a 42-old man recently returned from Cancun. Argentina has joined other nations in banning flights to and from Mexico. There are no reported flu cases in Argentina, and Buenos Aires wants to keep it that way. Mexico remains the epicentre of the outbreak, and much of the country was all-but shut down over the holiday weekend. Football matches were played in empty stadiums, and people were urged to stay at home. But the attractions of Acapulco proved too much for some and that advice seemed to have fallen on deaf ears.