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Yemen: Houthis announce state of emergency following cholera outbreak

Yemeni people fill plastic barrels with clean water, distributed by charities, in Madhbah village of Sana'a, Yemen on 1 April, 2019 [Mohammed Hamoud/Anadolu Agency]
Yemeni people fill plastic barrels with clean water, distributed by charities, in Madhbah village of Sana'a, Yemen on 1 April, 2019 [Mohammed Hamoud/Anadolu Agency]

Yemen’s Houthis yesterday announced a state of emergency in areas under their control after a sharp increase in the number of reported cholera cases.

The Houthi-allied Saba news agency said Taha Al-Mutawakil, the health minister in the group’s government, has declared a state of emergency to cope with the cholera epidemic.

Earlier on Saturday, the group ordered all school canteens in the capital Sana’a to close for ten days in an attempt to control the epidemic.

The United Nations reported last month that there had been a sharp rise in the number of reported cases of cholera in Yemen, noting that as many as 190 have died from the epidemic and 109,000 have been infected by it since the beginning of 2019.

READ: Killed by cholera, Yemeni doctor knew he was fighting ‘disastrous’ epidemic

Impoverished Yemen has remained in a state of civil war since 2014, when Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including the capital Sanaa.

In 2015, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a massive air campaign aimed at reversing Houthi military gains and shoring up Yemen’s embattled government.

According to UN officials, more than 50,000 people have been killed in the war, while more than 11 per cent of the country’s population has been displaced.

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International OrganisationsMiddle EastNewsUNYemen
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