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Refugees spark crisis in Tanzania

Published 19/05/2015

Turmoil in Burundi is affecting other countries (AP)
Turmoil in Burundi is affecting other countries (AP)

A severe humanitarian crisis is unfolding in Tanzania as thousands of Burundians seek refuge there because of political tensions back home, the World Health Organisation said.

The WHO said in a statement that the situation is "especially worrisome" in Tanzania's Kagunga village, where the original population of 11,382 has increased to more than 90,000 since April.

It said between 500 and 2,000 people are arriving daily, overwhelming the health infrastructure.

Cases of acute diarrhoea and cholera have been confirmed among the refugees, and experts who assessed the situation have recommended emergency measures to ensure a timely response in the Kigoma region near the border with Burundi, according to the WHO.

Amid political unrest, more than 105,000 Burundians have sought refuge in Tanzania, Rwanda and Congo.

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