“With nearly half the world's human bird flu deaths, concern is building over Indonesia's refusal to share virus samples and its health minister's increasingly strident denunciations of global ‘conspiracies’.
Indonesia stopped sharing the samples with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in December 2006 on fears pharmaceutical companies would use them to make vaccines that are too expensive for poor countries. […] [Indonesian Health Minister Siti Fadilah] Supari told a rapturous crowd at a book discussion last week that rich nations were creating ‘new viruses’ and sending them to developing nations in order create markets for drug companies to sell vaccines. […] Indonesia announced in August that 112 people have died from the virus, out of more than 240 worldwide since late 2003. Only a handful of samples and genetic sequences have been shared with the WHO and researchers. The health ministry also earlier this year stopped publicly announcing bird flu deaths, only releasing information weeks or months after victims have died.”
The Agence France Presse reported yesterday that alarm grows as Indonesia thumbs nose at West over bird flu:
In an astonishing accusation, topping most peoples list of conspiracy theories, the Indonesian Health Minister has accused rich nations (read the USA) of creating new viruses and sending them to developing nations in order create markets for drug companies to sell vaccines.