WHO reports 50% rise in Yemen cholera cases

Press TV – The World Health Organization has reported a 50-percent increase in cholera cases in war-torn Yemen.

On Tuesday, WHO announced that 35,217 cases have been recorded since April 27 when the outbreak started. The number shows a 50-percent leap in cases compared to figures given by the organization last week.

On Friday, Nevio Zagaria, the WHO country representative for Yemen, reported that 242 people have been killed due to the outbreak, with about 23,500 other confirmed cases of the disease reported across the country in the past three weeks alone.

Cholera, which causes severe diarrhea and dehydration, is transmitted through contaminated drinking water and could prove fatal in up to 15 percent of untreated cases.

Yemeni men suspected of being infected with cholera receive treatment at a hospital in Sana’a on May 12, 2017.

Earlier in the month, Yemen’s Health Ministry declared a state of emergency in Sana’a in connection with the epidemic.

International organizations, including the United Nations and the Red Cross, say the Saudi-led war on Yemen and an embargo against the country may be responsible for the cholera epidemic. The Saudi aggression has taken a heavy toll on the poor country’s facilities and infrastructure, destroying many hospitals, schools, and factories.

Since March 2015, the Saudi regime has been engaged in a brutal campaign against Yemen in an attempt to reinstall Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, the president who resigned and is a staunch ally of Riyadh. The campaign also aims to crush the Houthi Ansarullah movement. The Saudi regime has failed to achieve its objectives.

Latest tallies show that the war on Yemen has so far killed over 12,000 Yemenis and wounded thousands more.

Cholera being spread intentionally?  

Director of the Azal Medical Center, Dr. Yahya Al-Hamdani, has suggested that the bacteria behind the outbreak may have been spread intentionally from the air.

“The most important reasons for the aggression are that they have sprayed toxic gases from the air; and hidden forces have worked on the spread of the epidemic,” he said.

A Yemeni child, suspected of being infected with cholera, receives treatment at a hospital in Sana’a on May 15, 2017.

Another doctor at the center, Yousra Sourai, said that they are having difficulties dealing with the influx of patients diagnosed with cholera.

“We were receiving more than 500 cases at the medical complex. We did not know how we could receive these cases, with the shortage of medicine, nurses and doctors,” she said.