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Fear of cholera outbreak prompts Somaliland to turn away Yemen refugees

Hiiraan Online
Wednesday, November 23, 2016


Berbera port, Somalia. Amina*, a Yemeni refugee, is talking on the phone with her mother with whom she had lost contact while fleeing the conflict in Yemen. CC BY-NC-ND/ICRC/Ayman Touhami

Berbera (HOL) - Somaliland had ordered its immigration officials to stop processing refugees arriving from Yemen after it had already stopped a group Somali returnees and Yemenis fleeing from the conflict.

Hiiraan Online learned that the government intervened in stopping the refugees to contain the potential outbreak of cholera which health authorities have documented in Yemen.

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'The reason is that there have been outbreaks of Cholera in Yemen and that is why we have temporarily halted the receiving of Yemeni refugees;  at least until the problem is solved'. The regional governor of Sahlil, Jama Yussuf Ahmed said.

The governor noted that they are working with international NGOs to find solutions for the problem.

Since the onset of the civil unrest in Yemen, Somaliland has seen similar waves of refugees arriving almost daily.

According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), ""The numbers of cholera cases in Yemen continue to increase, sparking concerns of a significant outbreak". 

Ravaged by war, Yemen's remaining health facilities have been unable to cope with the surge in suspected cases and NGOs are struggling to provide aid for the millions of displaced who still have no access to safe drinking water and sanitation.   



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