The number of confirmed cases of the monkeypox virus in France has risen to five, from three earlier in the week, French Health Minister Brigitte Bourguignon told RTL radio on Wednesday, as she promoted a targeted vaccination campaign against it.

France's health authority said earlier this week that it recommended that at-risk adults who have been in contact with a patient with confirmed monkeypox should be vaccinated. Health staff who have been exposed to a monkeypox patient should also receive the vaccine, it added.

Global health officials have sounded the alarm over rising cases in Europe and elsewhere of the monkeypox, which is a type of viral infection more common to west and central Africa.

Monkeypox is a virus that can cause symptoms including fever, aches and a distinctive bumpy rash.

It is usually mild, although there are two main strains - the Congo strain - with up to 10% mortality – and the West African strain, which has a fatality rate in about 1% of cases.

(Reporting by Nicolas Delame and Laetitia Volga; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)