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Cholera Cases In Iraq Soar To Over 1,600 In October; Six Dead

The United Nations says that over 1,600 cases of cholera have been confirmed in Iraq in the past month, worsening a humanitarian crisis that has left more than 8.6 million people in need of aid.

Separately, Iraq's Health Ministry reported more than 1,800 cases and six deaths from cholera, and said the outbreak has now spread to Iraq's northern Kurdistan region.

The illness, which can lead to death by dehydration and kidney failure within hours if left untreated, was first detected last month west of Baghdad. Most of the new cases are there and in Babel Province south of the capital.

On September 22, there were about 54 cholera cases, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said.

That soared to over 1,600 cases by October 15, according to the World Health Organization and Iraq's Health Ministry. Almost 40 percent of the cases were in Babylon

The UN said on October 21 that the main accelerators of the cholera outbreak are broken water-supply systems and the lack of sufficient chlorine in the country to provide clean water.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters