War in a Time of Cholera

Violence at Karbala, Baghdad, Falluja dogged the al-Maliki government on Monday, while the significance of the agreements reached by the presidential council on national reconciliation remained in doubt. Unless parliament passes them, they remain a dead letter. The Sunni Arabs continued to decline to rejoin al-Maliki’s government.

Meanwhile, the public health crisis that is Iraq worsened over the weekend:

The USG Open Source Center translates a report on Kurdistan television on a cholera outbreak in Sulaymaniya. Al-Hayat reports in Arabic that there are fears of the disease spreading through the northern provinces.

Iraqi Kurdistan health minister announces five cholera deaths
Kurdistan Satellite TV
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Document Type: OSC Summary

Iraqi Kurdistan health minister announces five cholera deaths

The Kurdistan Region minister of health has announced, in a news conference, the death of five patients from cholera in the region, Kurdistan Democratic Party-run Kurdistan Satellite TV reported on 26 August.

The TV broadcast excerpts from a news conference by the regional minister of health, Ziryan Uthman, who announced the death of five people from cholera in the cities of Kirkuk and Sulaymaniyah. “There have been a few cases of diarrhoea recently in Kirkuk. There have been also about 2,000 cases of severe diarrhoea in Sulaymaniyah, and medical examinations showed that three of the cases in Sulaymaniyah were cholera cases. This means that most of the diarrhoea cases in Sulaymaniyah were cholera cases,” the minister said.

He added: “We have requested assistance from the World Health Organization, the Red Cross, and the centre’s Ministry of Health in Baghdad in fighting the disease.”

The minister said that the casualties were all elderly people suffering from other diseases. He added that “there are about 150 to 200 (cholera) cases in Sulaymaniyah”.

(Description of Source: Salah-al-Din Kurdistan Satellite TV in Sorani Kurdish — Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) satellite TV)