Sunday, July 01, 2007

Malacca offended by Melaka virus

The name of a new bat virus has offended the Malaysian state of Melaka (Malacca). From Fox News:

They called it the Melaka virus, using the name of the southern state where it was isolated in early 2006 in a human patient.

Chief Minister Ali Rustam said Saturday the state does not want to be associated with the virus and called the name choice "an insult" to Melaka, which is a popular tourist destination because of its historical sites.

"Melaka is a good state, beautiful and peaceful, not the birthplace of diseases," The Star daily quoted him as saying.

Ali said the state government would lodge a formal protest with Malaysia's health ministry.

Looks like the protest is working. The latest word is that the name of the bat virus will be changed.

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