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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 February 2008, 16:37 GMT
Cholera crisis on Somali border
Somali woman suffering from cholera (archive image)
Access to cholera treatment is limited in war-torn Somalia
About 70 people have died in a severe outbreak of cholera in southern Somalia, close to the Kenyan border town of Mandera, reports say.

At least 400 people have been affected and drought conditions are aggravating the problem.

People affected on the Kenyan side of the border are getting medical aid but almost none is available in Somalia, says the BBC's reporter in the region.

Local non-government organisations have appealed for international help.

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The crisis is affecting Somalia's Gedo region, where people interact with their Kenyan neighbours across the border in Mandera, the BBC's Bashkash Jugsodaay says.

Health personnel are helping sufferers on the Kenyan side and spreading information about how the illness can be contracted from dirty water.

However, in Gedo, the lack of medical facilities is making the situation unbearable, our reporter says.

The handful of NGOs in the area are unable to provide enough support and fear the situation might get out of control, he adds.

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