The Georgian capital, Tbilisi, is in a grip of a flu outbreak which has left at least two people dead.
Hundreds of people are ill
All schools in the city have been closed until the end of the month.
Nearly 1,000 people are said to have sought emergency medical treatment.
The flu outbreak, involving the Moscow-99 strain of the virus, is expected to reach its peak later this week.
Georgian Health Minister Amiran Gamkrelidze said he had given the order to close schools because attendance was being severely disrupted by the outbreak.
One head teacher, Shota Malazonia, said more than 300 of his 1,050 pupils had been absent on a single day.
An 11-year-old boy is one of the reported victims. A woman aged 52 has also died.
Some reports say the levels of illness are 10 times higher than the official figures.
Colleges and nurseries have remained open despite the flu outbreak.