UN, humanitarians allocate $9.5 mn to fight cholera outbreak in Lebanon

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United Nations, March 2 (IANS) The UN and the Lebanese Humanitarian Fund have allocated $9.5 million to prevent the spread of cholera in Lebanon, a UN Spokesman said.

Stephane Dujarric, the Chief Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, said on Wednesday that the funds from the world organisation’s Central Emergency Response Fund with the non-governmental organisation humanitarian funds are for targeting more than 1.5 million people across Lebanon, including refugees from Syria and Palestine.

“The UN team in Lebanon, led by UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator Imran Riza, is working with authorities and partners to combat the spread of cholera in a country that is already plagued by a severe economic and financial crisis,” Dujarric added.

“There has been more than 6,500 suspected and confirmed cases of cholera and 23 associated deaths since the first case was reported five months ago.”

He said that as of February 15, with the support of the World Health Organisation and the International Coordination Group, 1.1 million oral cholera vaccines had been administered. The vaccination campaign that began in mid-November 2022 had a coverage rate of more than 90 per cent by the end of last year, Xinhua news agency reported.

Lebanon has been suffering from an economic and financial crisis, which began in 2019 and has put more than 80 per cent of the population into poverty.

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