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“We have officially requested China, via the foreign ministry, to send us this strain of the virus,” Gennady Onishchenko told journalists.
China has so far confirmed 17 deaths and 82 infections of H7N9 avian influenza since first announcing earlier this month that it had detected the strain in people for the first time.
The disease has so far been mainly concentrated in eastern China provinces, although one person has died in Beijing.
There is currently no vaccine to protect against the virus.
“We need to get to work on this virus,” he added.
The World Health Organisation has said there is no evidence of human-to-human transmission of the flu.