UN warns of third wave of Yemen cholera epidemic

United Nations, (ANTARA Nes) - The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on Wednesday said that the number of suspected cholera cases in Yemen is reportedly increasing, raising concerns of a possible "third wave" of the epidemic.

Since April 2017, more than 1.1 million suspected cases and more than 2,300 associated deaths have been reported, making it the largest outbreak on record, said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at the regular news briefing.

"Humanitarian partners are responding to avoid a large-scale resurgence. This month, our partners have vaccinated more than 385,000 people against cholera in the high-risk districts of Hodeidah and Ibb," said Dujarric, as reported by Xinhua.

"OCHA is disturbed by damage to health and water, sanitation, and hygiene infrastructure due to conflict," he said, adding that "access to these services is crucial to prevent another cholera epidemic."

"All parties to the conflict must meet their obligations under international humanitarian law to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure," he said.

"We`ve had two major waves of cholera epidemics in recent years, and unfortunately the trend data that we`ve seen...suggests that we may be on the cusp of the third major wave of cholera epidemics in Yemen," Peter Salama, deputy director-general of emergency preparedness and response of the World Health Organization, said last week in Geneva.

 

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