UN launches diphtheria vaccination campaign for 2.8 million Yemeni children
UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Thursday that over 4,000 Yemenis have gotten diphtheria since 2017 and more than 200 have died.
He says the World Health Organization and UNICEF report that preliminary data indicate that over 1 million children have been vaccinated within the first five days of the campaign.
Diphtheria is an infectious and contagious disease that usually involves the nose, throat, and air passages, but may also infect the skin.
Dujarric says more than 8,000 health workers and community volunteers are participating in the vaccination campaign in eight cities, including Hodeida, Al Jawf, Dhamar and Ibb.
Rights groups and humanitarian agencies say the humanitarian crisis in Yemen is largely man-made, caused by the upheaval of war.
Yemen's conflict escalated when a Saudi-led military coalition intervened in March 2015 in an attempt to restore the authority of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi.
The conflict has since killed tens of thousands of people - most of them civilians - and driven millions more to the brink of famine in what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.