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Peru denies risk of Zika virus for tourists

LIMA, Feb. 9 (Xinhua) -- Peru is not considered one of the countries where the Zika virus poses a risk for foreign travelers due to its relative high altitude, Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism Magali Silva said on Tuesday.

"Though Peru is not among the high-risk countries, we are continuing with prevention campaigns and inspections to monitor and contain the virus," Silva told reporters.

She said Peru has so far registered only one imported Zika case involving a young Venezuelan man who came to the country from Colombia. The patient was treated shortly after arrival and is now recuperating.

"We are dealing with this (epidemic) with a very good level of training obtained in our fight against dengue and then against chikungunya. We are following all the right immediate-response protocols," the minister said.

She said that since much of Peru is over 2,200 meters above sea level, the country is relatively protected against the Zika virus as the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes that carry the virus cannot breed at that height.

Peru boasts numerous tourism sites, including the Inca city of Machu Picchu.

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