Tuesday, August 28, 2007
(RFE/RL) - The Kurdistan region's health minister, Ziryan Uthman, announced on August 26 that five people have died from cholera in the cities of Al-Sulaymaniyah and Kirkuk, Kurdistan Satellite Television reported. Saying there have been a few cases of diarrhea in Kirkuk, he added, "There have also been about 2,000 cases of severe diarrhea in Al-Sulaymaniyah, and medical examinations showed that three of [the deaths] in Al-Sulaymaniyah were [due to] cholera." Uthman said those infected were all elderly persons already battling other diseases, suggesting that the victims may have had impaired immune systems. Uthman added that there are currently 150 to 200 known cholera cases in Al-Sulaymaniyah. "We have requested assistance from the World Health Organization, the Red Cross, and the Ministry of Health in Baghdad," he noted.