COPENHAGEN, 4th February, 2016 (WAM) — The World Health Organisation, WHO, has called on European countries to take precautionary measures against the Zika virus to contain its spread.

The WHO Regional Director for Europe, Zsuzsanna Jakab, said in a statement yesterday that travellers to Europe contracted the virus after visiting infested areas in Latin America.

She warned people against the spread of the virus in Europe, adding that any European country in which the Aedes Aegypti mosquito is living, is prone to the hazard of the disease spreading.

On Monday, the WHO declared the Zika virus, and its suspected link to birth defects, an international public health emergency in a rare move that signals the seriousness of the outbreak and gives countries new tools to fight the disease.

The WHO said it does not recommend travel or trade restrictions related to the Zika virus, but suggested that national governments may want to issue travel recommendations to their own populations.