Source AP ©

Russia restricts farm animal, raw meat imports from Georgia

Thousands of pigs have died in recent months of African swine fever in Georgia so Russia has imports of farm animals and raw meat from the country, officials said Thursday.

Russia's agriculture oversight agency did not specify in its statement whether the restrictions meant the products had been banned and when the limitations would be lifted.

In Tbilisi, Georgia's deputy Agriculture Minister told the Associated Press that more than 20,000 pigs had died of the disease in the past three months and that trade in pork meat had been banned in some affected parts of the country.

African swine fever, caused by a virus and spread from warthogs to domesticated pigs by ticks, is endemic in southwestern Europe and most of Southern Africa.