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Thousands of Haitians Are Dead; UN Admits It's Partly to Blame

A cholera outbreak has been ravaging the country since 2010

(Newser) - After six years, the UN has admitted it is at least partially responsible for the cholera outbreak ravaging Haiti, the New York Times reports. The epidemic started in 2010 near a base where UN peacekeepers from Nepal had just arrived. Nepal was experiencing an outbreak of cholera at the time,... More »

Identity of Polish 'Vampires' Revealed

They were likely local cholera victims buried with sickles at throats

(Newser) - To make sure certain people didn't rise from the grave to feast on the living, villagers in 17th- and 18th-century Poland buried them with sickles across their throats or rocks in their jaws, and researchers think they now know why. According to a study published in PLoS ONE , the... More »

Century-Old Tissue Unlocks Cholera's Genome

Research reveals link between disease's first 2 pandemics

(Newser) - Using a tiny scrap of long-preserved tissue, researchers from the Ancient DNA Centre at Ontario's McMaster University have managed to map out the genome of the cholera strain that ravaged the globe in the early 19th century, in the second of seven pandemics linked to the disease. The research... More »

UN Sued Over Haiti Cholera Outbreak

Victims claim peacekeepers spread disease through bad sewerage system

(Newser) - It's cholera in the time of litigation: Haitian victims of the disease are filing a lawsuit against the UN, claiming peacekeepers are responsible for the outbreak that has killed more than 8,300 and sickened some 650,000 there since 2010. The Boston-based Institute for Justice and Democracy in... More »

50 Cubans Infected in Cholera Outbreak

1 case turns up in Havana, far from outbreak source

(Newser) - Just days after cholera broke out in Cuba's southeastern city of Manzanillo, a case has been discovered in the capital, Havana, reports the BBC . Authorities say a contaminated well was responsible for the outbreak, which has killed three people and infected 50 so far. Another 1,000 are being... More »

Expert: UN Brought Cholera to Haiti

Nepalese base blamed for epidemic

(Newser) - A French researcher has reached the same conclusion about the Haitian cholera outbreak as rioters did: United Nations peacekeepers are the likely source. The expert—sent by the French government to help Haiti investigate the epidemic that has killed more than 2,000 people—believes the disease probably spread from... More »

Amid Tragedy, Haiti Readies for Vote

No clear favorite among 18 candidates

(Newser) - Facing recovery from a pair of natural disasters and an outbreak of cholera, work is cut out for Haiti’s next president. Who that will be, however, is anyone’s guess: of 18 candidates, no one campaigner has pulled ahead, the Wall Street Journal reports. With some 80% of pledged... More »

Cholera Exploding in Haiti

200K cases of fatal disease are expected by year's end

(Newser) - In Haiti, it's going from bad to worse to worse, with the news that the UN has doubled the number of cholera cases it expects to see there. A UN official says 425,000 cases are expected to occur in the first six months following the fatal disease's October appearance—... More »

Haiti's Cholera Reaches US

Florida sees first case, but officials say it's not a big threat

(Newser) - Cholera has made its way to US shores, but health authorities in Florida say it's no cause for alarm, CNN reports. A woman who returned from a visit to Haiti fell ill with the disease, which has now killed 1,100 people there and spread to the neighboring Dominican Republic.... More »

Haitians Attack Peacekeepers

Protesters believe Nepalese soldiers started illness outbreak

(Newser) - Protesters who blame United Nations peacekeepers from Nepal for a deadly outbreak of cholera have attacked a base in northern Haiti. Shots were fired as protests spread through the city of Cap-Haitien and at least two people are believed to have been killed, AP reports. Six Nepalese peacekeepers were injured... More »

Cholera Kills 900+ in Haiti

Outbreak has reached six of the country's 10 provinces

(Newser) - Cholera has claimed more than 900 lives in Haiti and has hit six of the country’s 10 provinces. As of Friday, more than 14,600 had been hospitalized since the outbreak began last month , according to Haiti’s Health Ministry website. Cholera has reached the capital of Port-au-Prince,... More »

Cholera Hits Port-au-Prince; Toll at 250

Yet officials hopeful they can contain outbreak

(Newser) - With the potential for an epidemic looming, Haitian officials reported five cases of cholera in the capital Port-au-Prince today, reports the BBC, though they say the cases were caught early and isolated quickly. The news comes as the death toll in the outbreak topped 250 and Haiti's health chief said... More »

Cholera Outbreak Spreads Toward Haiti's Capital

More than 200 dead, thousands sick

(Newser) - An outbreak of cholera has spread outside a rural valley in central Haiti, intensifying worries the disease could reach squalid tarp camps that house hundreds of thousands of earthquake survivors in the capital. More than 200 have been confirmed dead in the poor Caribbean nation's worst health crisis since the... More »

Cholera Kills 138 in Haiti

Outbreak sickens more than 1K lightning fast

(Newser) - A fast-moving outbreak of what officials believe is cholera has killed at least 138 people in central Haiti within 48 hours, and infected more than a thousand others. The outbreak, the first since January's earthquake, has overwhelmed public health facilities, the BBC reports. The infection, spread through contaminated food and... More »

Pakistan Confirms Cholera Case

UN fears the outbreak of many more

(Newser) - Queue the locusts: Pakistan has confirmed its first case of deadly waterborne cholera, and officials in the devastated northwest region fear there will be more in wake of flooding that has killed an estimated 1500. And the bad news got worse for Pakistan, reports the AP, with fresh flooding hitting... More »

Forget Swine Flu— 5 Pandemics to Fear

(Newser) - While the world panics over swine flu, many far more serious outbreaks lie in wait, reports Foreign Policy. Here are some you won’t see on TV—yet:  
  • Cholera: The deadly diarrheal infection is rampant in Africa, with infections shooting up 96% in 2006. The current outbreak in Zimbabwe
... More »

Zimbabwe's Prisons Are 'Hell on Earth'

With no food, medicine, dozens die daily in death camp conditions

(Newser) - In Zimbabwe even a short prison term can quickly turn into a death sentence: Conditions are so unsanitary and food so scarce that dozens die daily, as revealed in a secretly shot documentary. Using smuggled cameras, the film shows rotting bodies and mass graves—and that's just in a single... More »

President's Half-Brother Hospitalized

Malik Obama undergoes tests for cholera in Kenya

(Newser) - Barack Obama's elder half-brother has been hospitalized in Kenya amid an outbreak of cholera in the region, reports the AP. Malik Obama, 51, was taken to the hospital Tuesday, and a domestic worker of his was hospitalized for cholera last week. Malik is the son of Barack Obama Sr. and... More »

Mugabe Buys Secret $5.8M Hong Kong Getaway

Prez spends lavishly as Zimbabwean economy implodes

(Newser) - While his country battles massive inflation, unemployment and cholera, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has secretly bought a $5.8 million residence in Hong Kong, the Times of London reports. His wife recently spent some $80,000 on Vietnamese statues and $12,500 on a bag. When she recently discussed a... More »

Zimbabwe Cholera Outbreak Now Infects 60K

(Newser) - Zimbabwe’s cholera epidemic has now infected more than 60,000 people, a number the World Health Organization had previously pegged as the “worst case scenario,” the BBC reports. More than 3,000 have died from the disease since its August outbreak, and with Zimbabwe’s water, sanitation,... More »

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