Cholera outbreak in Syria still under control: Health Minister

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Damascus, Sep 18 (IANS) Syria’s Health Minister has said that the cholera outbreak in northern Syria is still under control, the state news agency SANA reported.

Hasan Al-Ghabbash made the remarks on Saturday during his meeting with UN representatives and other NGOs in Syria, saying that due to preemptive measures, the situation is still under control.

Al-Ghabbash said the Ministry has adopted a response plan, starting with securing clean water and raising awareness in addition to activating early response teams, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Minister pointed out that a major water outage has continued for 50 days in the northeastern Hasakah province after Turkish forces halted pumping from the Alouk water station, saying the move was a possible factor behind the outbreak.

Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection caused by the consumption of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae, WHO said on its website.

On Tuesday, the Ministry said a total of 53 cholera cases had been reported in the country, including seven deaths, prompting a UN humanitarian official to express “serious concern” about the outbreak.

–IANS

int/khz/

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