The first human death in Europe as a result of swine flu has been registered in Scotland, local officials have announced.

As of June 14, there have been 1,226 cases of the A/H1N1 virus registered in Great Britain, most of them in England (752 cases) and in Scotland (463 cases).

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the virus has affected 74 countries where 29,669 people have been diagnosed and 145 have died. There have been 108 deaths in Mexico, 27 in the United States, four in Canada, two in Chile, and in Costa Rica, Columbia, Dominican Republic and Guatemala have registered one death each.

For the first time in more than 40 years, the WHO raised the pandemic alert to level 6 on Thursday after consultations with the organization''s emergency committee.

The WHO said the swine flu pandemic could last a long time, but recommended that national borders should not be closed and that the flow of people and goods throughout the world should not be restricted because of the outbreak.