'Israel Must Call New Disease Mexico Flu, as Swine Unkosher'

Deputy Health Minister Litzman assures Israeli public that authorities are prepared to handle any cases.

Ultra-Orthodox Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman on Monday declared that Israel would call the new potentially deadly disease that has already struck two continents 'Mexico Flu,' rather than 'Swine Flu, as pigs are not kosher.

"We will call it Mexico flu. We won't call it swine flu," Litzman told a news conference on Monday, assuring the Israeli public that authorities were prepared to handle any cases.

Under Jewish dietary laws, pigs are considered unclean and pork is forbidden food, although the non-kosher meat is available in some stores in Israel.

Two cases of suspected swine flu have been detected in Israel, but Health Ministry officials have said chances are low that either hospitalized men has actually contracted the disease.

Both men, one 47 years old and the other 26, were quarantined after checking into hospital with flu-like symptoms upon their return from Mexico this week.