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Cholera Outbreak in Angola Worsens

April 11, 2006

LUANDA, Angola (AP) _ A cholera outbreak hitting Angola since mid-February has worsened and killed some 326 people since then, health officials said.

The outbreak, which started in the Angolan capital of Luanda, had spread to three other provinces.

``The situation is worsening and it is worrying us,″ Health Minister Sebastiao Veloso said.

Some 6,782 cases had been registered countrywide in the provinces of Luanda, Bengela, Bengo and North Kuanza, which had the highest mortality rate with 66 dead in 770 people diagnosed with the disease, an official report said.

The Boavista neighborhood in Luanda was still the center of the epidemic.

About 4 million people live in Luanda, where public infrastructure crumbled during a two-decade civil war that ended in 2002.

Cholera is transmitted through contaminated water and is linked to poor hygiene, overcrowding and inadequate sanitation. The disease can be treated easily if patients are rehydrated quickly.

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