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(From Guardian Unlimited)
Swine flu has become the world's first official pandemic in 41 years after the World Health Organisation raised the alert level on the H1N1 virus from phase 5 to 6, the highest on the scale.
The decision was made after a meeting of experts in Geneva today and comes as infections have climbed in Europe, the US, Australia, South America and elsewhere. The WHO chief, Dr Margaret Chan, yesterday examined data from eight countries with large numbers of swine flu cases.
"The world is moving into the early days of its first influenza pandemic in the 21st century," Chan told reporters tonight, advising that countries should prepare for a …