Western Sahara: Covid19 - No Cases Reported in Refugee Camps, Liberated Territories Thanks to Prevention Measures

Algiers — President of the Saharawi Red Crescent (CRS), Yahia Bouhabini said Monday that the prevention measures taken by the Saharawi authorities against the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic "have yielded positive results without recording any cases of contamination in the Saharawi refugee camps and liberated territories," welcoming the contribution of the Algerian Red Crescent (CRA), having allowed the delivery of international humanitarian aid to the Saharawi in this exceptional situation.

"The Sahrawi authorities have taken strict precautionary measures against Covid-19, through the establishment, from the outset, of a committee, chaired by the Sahrawi Prime Minister, Bouchraya Hamoudi Beyoun, and the interruption of all contact between the five refugee camps, except in cases of force majeure, in addition to the closure of the borders and public institutions that provided the minimum service for basic benefits," Yahia Bouhabini told APS, stressing that these measures "had yielded positive results and no cases of COVID-19 infection were recorded".

The same official said that confinement centers had been set up for people outside the refugee camps, adding that "the tests of three suspected cases had been negative".

The Sahrawi authorities opted for prevention in refugee camps, "which contributed to the rapid adherence of refugees to the measures taken against COVID-19," Bouhabini said.

On the economic and humanitarian fronts, Bouhabini noted that the pandemic, which affected more than 160 countries around the world, had had a negative impact, further weakening the situation in the camps, in particular because of delays in the delivery of aid at the beginning of this global health crisis.

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