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* Foot-and-mouth disease ravages Iraq's livestock and threatens the region (Arabic News) * Over 10,000 Iraqi children and elderly died of malnutrition in January (Arabic News) ******************** Disease ravages Iraq's live stock and source of protein, threatens region Arabic News, Iraq, Health, 3/29/99 The general manager of veterinarian department in the Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture, Fadel Abass, announced that Iraq requires urgent help to combat foot-and-mouth disease that has led to the death of more than million sheep till now. He also stated that the germ causing foot-and-mouth disease is spreading quickly, and he called on international organizations to present urgent aid. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) expressed grave concern on February 10 "that the outbreak of animal diseases in Iraq may spread to other countries in the Near East seriously undermining food security in the region." FAO warned "The multitude of diseases afflicting livestock in Iraq threatens the health of people living in infested areas and could seriously undermine food security in the countries of the Near East. " The UN agency added "FAO is gravely concerned that the outbreak of animal diseases in Iraq may spread to other countries in the Near East. The diseases include the Old World screwworm, foot-and-mouth disease, peste des petits ruminants (PPR) and brucellosis. Except for brucellosis, which is endemic to the region, the diseases may easily spread to neighboring countries." The UN agency said "Iraq would need to import the vaccines required to fight foot-and-mouth disease and PPR. The vaccines are made from inactive or incapacitated disease agents, which cannot be used for other purposes. Procurement of the vaccines and their timely delivery is vital to safeguarding animal health, which is an essential component of food security in the region. The animal disease situation in Iraq has been aggravated by the collapse of the veterinary infrastructure and disease investigation, surveillance and diagnostic services in the country. The government has been unable to adequately monitor and control the spread of these diseases, partly because of the difficulties it has in obtaining equipment and supplies, particularly vaccines. As a result the Iraqi government has repeatedly sought the assistance of FAO to deal with the outbreaks. Given the potential adverse repercussions of the animal diseases on the countries that border Iraq, FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf met with permanent representatives to FAO from concerned countries on 29 January. The meeting, at FAO Headquarters, discussed the current state of the epidemic diseases in Iraq and measures taken by the Organization to contain and eradicate the diseases. It also urged countries in the region to be vigilant and to step up precautionary disease monitoring and control measures." The Iraqi official Abass said that since several months ago the disease caused the ruin of more than one million sheep and 150,000 calves. He added that inspection and supervision groups affiliated to the United Nation in charge of disarming Iraq (UNSCOM) destroyed the facilities producing the vaccine for this disease. He said this disease has afflicted sheep and quickly spread due to a lack of protective and treatment requirements resulting from economic sanctions. ******************** Over 10,000 Iraqi children and elderly died of malnutrition Arabic News, Iraq, Health, 3/15/99 More than 10,000 Iraqi children and elderly died last January of malnutrition against 766 lives claimed during the same month in 1989. The Iraqi health department said some 9,162 children and elderly died last February in Iraq against 835 recorded during the same month in 1989 before the enforcement of the UN sanctions against Baghdad in 1990 after the Gulf War. ******************** -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email firstname.lastname@example.org, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html