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The water problem in Mogadishu

Somalia, August 29, 2011

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Mogadishu is home to one of the worse humanitarian emergencies I've seen, from a medical standpoint — at least since the famine in South Sudan in 1998.

There is water here, but there is not enough access to it for the massive influx of displaced families crowding into Mogadishu. There is no infrastructure to convey the water to people. Also, the water is not decontaminated.

This is compounding the medical problems. The medical care is very poor here. Measles and acute watery diarrhea is killing dozens every day from lack of hygiene, safe water, and the poor respect of hygiene protocols in the health care system.

Our activities will resume after Eid, the celebration of the end of Ramadan. On Wednesday we hope to clear the way to revamp the water system at Mogadishu's main hospital, and to begin trucking water to some of the camps.

Update: Mercy Corps began making daily deliveries of clean drinking water to one of Mogadishu's displacement camps on Sept. 2.