Creating new perspectives since 2009

UN warns of cholera outbreak in Syria

September 14, 2022 at 2:14 pm

A sign of the World Health Organisation (WHO) [FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images]

The World Health Organisation (WHO) warned on Tuesday of a “very high” risk of a cholera outbreak in Syria after announcing last week that infections had been recorded in several governorates for the first time since 2009.

This comes after the Syrian Ministry of Health declared an outbreak of cholera in the Aleppo governorate. The ministry reported two deaths and 26 cases.

Additionally, the Kurdish Autonomous Administration reported on Saturday that it had recorded three deaths and several cases in areas under its control in Raqqa and the western countryside of Deir Ez-Zor.

In 2008 and 2009 Syria recorded cholera outbreaks in Deir Ez-Zor and Raqqa, according to the WHO.

READ: UN allocates emergency aid to Lebanon in preparation for winter

“Based on a rapid assessment conducted by health authorities and partners, the source of infection is believed to be linked to people drinking unsafe water from the Euphrates River and using contaminated water to irrigate crops, resulting in food contamination,” said the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Syria, Imran Riza.

“Cholera remains a global threat to public health and an indicator of inequity,” he added.

After an 11-year conflict, Syria is witnessing a drought and acute water crisis due to the destruction of the water and sanitation infrastructure.