40 dead in Bangladeshs worstever dengue outbreak

first_imgDhaka: At least 40 people have died in Bangladesh’s worst-ever outbreak of dengue, officials said Tuesday, as overburdened hospitals struggled to treat thousands of patients. Outbreaks of the mosquito-borne viral infection, which causes flu-like symptoms but can be deadly if it develops into a haemorrhagic fever, usually occur in the South Asian nation during the monsoon season between June and September — but this year the disease has reached epidemic proportions. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US More than 44,000 people have been admitted to hospitals with the illness since January, including some 2,100 on Monday alone, said health ministry official Ayesha Akhter. “We have confirmed 40 dengue-related casualties so far to Monday,” she told AFP. Local media put the number much higher, reporting that the death toll passed 100 last week. The week-long holiday marking the Muslim festival of Eid-al-Adha has seen hundreds of thousands of people leaving Bangladeshi cities to return to their family homes in the countryside, raising concerns that the disease will spread further. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls The country’s health minister said the outbreak was “gradually reducing” while inaugurating an emergency dengue ward at a public hospital in Dhaka this week. For the first time on record, holidays for all public health workers have been cancelled to help respond to the crisis, said health ministry director general Abul Kalam Azad. “It is getting very tough to cope up with the amount of work pressure,” one medical officer told AFP.last_img read more

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Albertas status of women minister joins Twitter debate over womens marches

first_imgEDMONTON – A minister in Alberta’s NDP government has chastised a tweet by the Opposition’s communications chair that slammed women’s marches held over the weekend.Status of Women Minister Stephanie McLean was responding to a Twitter post on Saturday from Sonia Kont of the United Conservative Party, who stated that “ideological marches like the one in Washington” do not empower women.Kont added that the last time she checked everyone had the same rights in society, and the march lacked clarity and purpose.McLean responded that the UCP “ridiculed the strength of women marching together in solidarity and using their voices fighting for equality.”Dozens of marches were held in communities across Canada on Saturday, a year after women’s marches that sprang up around the globe in the wake of Donald Trump’s inauguration as U.S. president.The event drew a large crowd at the provincial legislature in Edmonton, and an even larger one in Calgary.“What rights have women lost in the United States or Canada? It’s a shame these marches don’t say a word about the horrific conditions women face in the Middle East,” Kont tweeted in response to criticism of her initial posts.“Did this march also voice support for Iranian women or the Kurdish female heroes fighting ISIS? How about the Saudi Arabian women? They deserve rights and freedom too.”McLean, meanwhile, noted that women face a pay gap with men, are responsible for more childcare, make up only a fraction of corporate boards, and face other issues such as domestic violence.A number of people supported McLean on Twitter, including one who linked to a tweet by former prime minister Kim Campbell.“What I love about these marches are that they are everywhere,” Canada’s first and only female prime minister said. “And there are LOTS of great MEN smiling and marching with the women!”But there was also support for Kont, including a tweet from fellow UCP member Bettina Pierre-Gilles, who is listed on the party’s website as a member of its policy committee.“I couldn’t agree more with you Sonia. I’m a proud advocate for women and working our way to the top,” her tweet states.“These marches indeed only sends a message that only the loudest few can be heard, while nothing is advocated on policies.”UCP Leader Jason Kenney added his own voice to the discussion on Sunday evening.“Proud that the United Conservatives have so many strong, outspoken women as members. Our party doesn’t force conformity. Members are free to hold differing views,” Kenney tweeted.Canadian organizers said Saturday that 38 communities were hosting marches, rallies and other events.Police in Calgary tweeted their own support for the event in that city, along with a picture of a uniformed officer with marchers.“We were honoured to not only ensure the (march) was safe for all participants, but also to show our support by taking part,” the tweet from the Calgary Police stated.last_img read more

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