The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
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Excerpt from below: "Meanwhile, experts say conditions for a cholera epidemic are perfect. Meat is sold from stalls on the side of stagnant puddles and children play in groups around the dirty water. With a population of 5 million and Baghdad temperatures now regularly 45 degrees and more, an epidemic of cholera could sweep through the city. ----------- http://www.care.org/ CARE 22 Jun 2003 Iraqis living in limbo struggle to keep hope alive Baghdad media contact: Grace Nicholas, +8821663220236 (office), +8821663220262 (mobile) or 0087 376 362 5617 (after hours). E-mail: email@example.com (Baghdad, 22 June) Living conditions in Iraq appear to be going backwards, not forwards. Electricity is now regularly cut for 10 hours overnight and cars drive through puddles of sewage nearly covering their wheels. Iraq is struggling to return to a pre-war standard of living. "Iraq is a society in limbo", says CARE Operations Director Anne Morris. "The lack of a functioning civil administration is a major problem. The future is a big unknown. There is a total disconnect between the people and what is to most Iraqis a faceless authority. If this is not fixed immediately, problems that were merely chronic are going to become acute." An example is the looted Sheikh Omar Healthcare Training Centre, which remains a shell more than 2 months after the war. Outside, patients must cross a stinking puddle of sewage and a pile of rotting rubbish at the entrance. Inside dirty syringes boil in a vat, ready to be used again, because disposable needles are not available. The centre's director is newly elected by his colleagues and is trying hard to help the 100 patients a day who still come to the centre after it was looted of all equipment. Before the war, 250 patients would come seeking help in this very poor part of Baghdad. He and his staff have been paid once in 3 months. Frustration is rising as weeks drag into months and still it is not clear when a public administration will be able to take control and plan for the future. "We must be patient. We help where we can and we must. But there is so much to do. We don't know where things are going," the centre's director says. CARE has made emergency repairs at the centre, providing sinks in examination rooms, lights in halls and locks to keep out thieves. Enough to keep the centre open, but so much more is needed. Meanwhile, experts say conditions for a cholera epidemic are perfect. Meat is sold from stalls on the side of stagnant puddles and children play in groups around the dirty water. With a population of 5 million and Baghdad temperatures now regularly 45 degrees and more, an epidemic of cholera could sweep through the city. CARE is working to keep diseases like cholera at bay by conducting emergency repairs at 100 healthcare centers in Baghdad. CARE is also providing clean water to families by patching up ailing water treatment plants and sewage stations in eight governorates in the centre and south of Iraq including Hilla, Baghdad and Moqdadiyeh. Throughout the conflict, dedicated CARE staff remained in Iraq to keep hospitals running and clean water flowing. CARE has been distributing food, hygiene kits, blankets, oxygen regulators and other supplies to hospitals and conducting emergency repairs to water treatment plants. During the war, CARE also distributed clean drinking water in and around Baghdad. The humanitarian organization continues to coordinate with UNHCR, managing two refugee camps near the Iraq/Jordan border. About CARE: CARE is one of the world's leading humanitarian organizations fighting global poverty. CARE has been working in Iraq since 1991, focusing on water and sanitation, and children's health and education. Approximately 4 million Iraqi people have benefited from CARE's work in the past 12 years. For more information, please visit www.care.org. CARE's work this week Hospitals and Healthcare Centres CARE is conducting emergency repairs to healthcare centers and hospitals within and outside Baghdad. This includes repairing generators, putting glass in windows, locks on doors, sinks in operating rooms and much more. In addition, assessments of medical needs and distributions of equipment are ongoing. Sewage stations and Water Treatment Plants CARE engineers are working to repair sewage stations and water treatment plants in eight governorates in Iraq to provide clean drinking water for communities. This week CARE engineers will be working in Hilla, Baghdad (Doura, New/Old Qadissiyeh, the sewage station near the Ministry of Information and Hai Saddam). Schools for the Deaf Children at schools for the deaf have completed exams. CARE is visiting the schools to ask teachers, social workers and others what they need to provide deaf children with a decent education. To arrange a visit to CARE projects or to interview CARE staff, please contact Grace Nicholas on the above details. _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email firstname.lastname@example.org All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk