Yemen records highest virus cases in one day

By Nabil Abdullah al-Tamimi in Aden


Mask-clad health workers enter the private al-Kubi Hospital in Yemen's southern coastal city of Aden on May 17th, amid fears that coronavirus is spreading unhindered in the Yemeni city. [Nabil Hasan/AFP]

Yemen has recorded its highest number of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infections in a single day, the supreme emergency committee for combatting COVID-19 said Tuesday (May 19th).

The government committee reported 37 new confirmed cases, raising the total number of cases across the country to 167, including 28 deaths.

In a statement, the committee said it had recorded 37 new infections on Tuesday, including three deaths.

Of this number, "19 cases were recorded in Aden, two in al-Daleh, nine in Hadramaut, one in Abyan, five in Taez and one in Marib", it said.

Aden has recorded the highest number of infections, with 90 confirmed cases and five deaths, followed by Hadramaut with 36 cases and 11 deaths, and Lahj with 19 cases and eight deaths.

Lahj governor Maj. Gen. Ahmed Abdullah Turki has declared Lahj an infected province, pointing to the presence of COVID-19 and other diseases.

Committee spokeswoman Eshraq al-Sebai said the increase in the number of coronavirus infections has compounded the challenges facing the health sector, five years into the war ignited by the Iran-backed Houthis (Ansarallah).

"Hospitals in Aden are now unable to provide services to citizens, especially with dozens of deaths reported every day resulting from other diseases that are spread in the province," she told Al-Mashareq.

"Aden needs to open more hospitals and health isolation centres, especially as the province has the biggest number of COVID-19 infections," she said.

Yemen's government has appealed to UN and international organisations to support its efforts to confront COVID-19 in Aden and other provinces, and to prop up hospitals and the health sector.

The government also has called for the formation of an international fact-finding committee to investigate the Houthis' handling of coronavirus infections in areas under their control.

The number of infections in Houthi-controlled areas are thought to be much higher than reported.

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Thank God for the good health. There is no coronavirus in Yemen. All those who say that there is coronavirus are wrong and don’t know the correct news. Yemen suffers from floods and torrential rain, and the diseases there are Dengue fever, diphtheria, cholera and Chikungunya. As to this, it doesn’t’ exist at all in Yemen. We thank God for the good health!