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UN peacekeepers blamed for cholera

Scientists are presenting the strongest evidence yet that UN peacekeepers imported the cholera strain that has killed more than 5,500 people in Haiti.

The study is published in the July issue of the Emerging Infectious Diseases journal of the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

Its findings “strongly suggest” the UN contingent from Nepal contaminated a Haitian river because of poor sanitation at a base.

Lead author Renaud Piarroux previously blamed peacekeepers. This study is more complete and its methodology was reviewed by other scientists.

It also argues for the importance of accurate field investigations. The UN, CDC and World Health Organisation initially refused to investigate the outbreak’s origin.

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