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Zimbabwe: Cholera

Volume 485: debated on Monday 15 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent discussions he has had with representatives of humanitarian organisations operating in Zimbabwe on the cholera outbreak in that country; and if he will make a statement. (242792)

The Department for International Development's (DFID) officials in Harare are in daily contact with organisations responding to the current humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe. We are pressing hard for a well coordinated and effective response. The cholera outbreak has come on top of a protracted food crisis and has revealed the full extent to which basic services in Zimbabwe have now collapsed.

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent estimate he has made of the number of people who have died in Zimbabwe as a result of the cholera outbreak; and if he will make a statement. (242805)

According to the United Nations (UN), by 8 December there had been 13,960 cases of cholera with 589 deaths reported in Zimbabwe. These figures account for those who report at treatment centres or whose deaths are reported to the authorities, and can be assumed to be an underestimate of the real number of people affected.