DUBAI May 14 Officials in the Yemeni capital of
Sanaa, controlled by the armed Houthi movement, declared a state
of emergency on Sunday after an outbreak of cholera, which has
killed dozens of people.
Yemen's health ministry called on humanitarian organisations
and other aid donors to help it deal with the epidemic and avert
an "unprecedented disaster". The health system, severely
degraded by more than two years of war that also displaced
millions, cannot cope, the state news agency, Saba, said.
Yemen is reeling from conflict between Houthi rebels,
aligned with Iran, and a Western-backed, Saudi-led coalition.
More than 10,000 people have been killed, mostly by almost-daily
air strikes, since the fighting began.
Only a few medical facilities are still functioning and
two-thirds of the population are without access to safe drinking
water, the United Nations has said. A epidemic late last year
faded but outbreaks of cholera are becoming more frequent.
The diarrheal disease has killed 51 people since April 27,
the World Health Organization said on Thursday, and 2,752 people
are suspected cases. Fifty eight more cases have been confirmed.
Sanaa has been worst hit by the outbreaks, followed by the
surround province of Amanat al-Semah, WHO data has shown. Cases
have also been reported in other major cities including
Hodeidah, Taiz and Aden.
WHO said that 7.6 million people live in areas at high risk
of cholera transmission.
Some 17 million of Yemen's 26 million people lack sufficient
food and at least three million malnourished children are in
"grave peril", the U.N. has said.
(Reporting by Ali Abdelatti Writing by Aziz El Yaakoubi;
Editing by Louise Ireland)