Last weekend I attended the World MoneyShow in London. On the night before the event it was confirmed that significant numbers of people had died from cholera in Port-au-Prince. I've been blogging about this issue for over two years, and in my opinion that means many thousands more will die from the same cause in the not too distant future.
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The media can't seem to agree on exactly how many people have now died of cholera, but they do seem to be agreed that the rate of infections and deaths is increasing, in Port-au-Prince as well as in most of the rest of Haiti.
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The BBC reports this evening that the cholera outbreak in Haiti is now entrenched in the capital Port-au-Prince:
Doctors are treating 73 people for the disease, amid fears that it could spread across the quake-hit city. Dozens of suspected cases are also being investigated in Port-au-Prince, which has feared an outbreak since October.
At long last the mainstream British media are doing some in depth reporting. Here's Channel 4's Jon Snow on the ground in Haiti, including an interview with Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive:
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According to Reuters this morning the death toll in Haiti as a direct consequence of Hurricane Tomas has reached seven. Haitian President René Préval said from the presidential palace that:
Now that, relatively speaking, Haiti has escaped the danger, we have to continue to be vigilant.
According to Imogen Wall, spokeswoman for the United Nations' Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
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Friday morning has arrived, and unfortunately the forecasts weren't too far out. Tomas has strengthened to hurricane force once more, and is travelling only slightly to the west of Tuesday's forecast track. According to Reuters:
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So far Haiti hasn't been troubled by the 2010 hurricane season, but unfortunately it looks as though that is about to change. As you can tell from his name, this year there have already been a lot of tropical storms in the Atlantic before Tomas. Up to now they have all somehow managed to avoid Haiti:
More on Tropical Storm Tomas Threatens Haiti Hurricane
We talked to a lot of people about Haiti yesterday at the South West Contemporary Art Fair in Totnes, England. Everyone we spoke to knew about the outbreak of cholera in Haiti. Nobody we spoke to knew that the inhabitants of Port-au-Prince had been shaken from their sleep by a seismic shock the previous night, or the previous month.
More on Significant Risk of Another Haiti Earthquake
I awoke this morning and checked the news from Haiti. The mainstream media now confirms that the cholera outbreak has reached the capital Port-au-Prince. According to Reuters a UN humanitarian spokeswoman said that the 5 known cases:
More on More Deaths in Haiti. More Shocks As Well.
Unfortunately it's not unexpected, but the BBC reports today that 196 people have already died in an outbreak of cholera in Haiti:
2,634 people have been hospitalised in the central Artibonite and Central Plateau regions by the illness, which causes diarrhoea, acute fever, vomiting and severe dehydration.
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According to YAHOO! news last month:
A U.S.-based think tank is painting a grim picture of the earthquake recovery effort in Haiti, adding its voice to widespread accusations of ineffectual local leadership.
James Dobbins, a former U.S. special envoy to Haiti and director of the RAND International Security and Defense Policy Center said that:
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