Egypt may cull thousands of pigs

CAIRO - Egypt is considering culling hundreds of thousands of pigs as a precautionary measure as swine flu nears its borders.

The move is not expected to block the H1N1 virus from striking, as the illness is spread by people and not present in Egyptian pigs. But acting against pigs, largely viewed as unclean in conservative Muslim Egypt, could help quell a panic.

Pigs are mainly raised by Egypt's Christian minority.

Experts fear any flu pandemic could spread quickly and have a devastating effect in a country where most of the roughly 80million people live in the densely packed Nile Valley. - Reuters