Another IDP camp in Dukok put under quarantine due to COVID-19 outbreak

Duhok, 5 August 2020 – the entrance of Cham-Mishko camp in Zakho – Photo by KirkukNow

Ammar Aziz - Duhok

Within one week, four COVID-19 infections have been registered so far among IDPs in Duhok.

Three of the cases were at the Bajid Kandala camp in Zakho, which the Duhok Health Department has decided to put under quarantine until further notice.

Saradar Yunis, director of the Bajid Kandala camp, told KirkukNow: “A 55-year-old displaced individual was sent to hospital due to breathing difficulties, and it turned out that he had contracted the Coronavirus.”

14 other individuals from the same camp, who were in the proximity of the infected individual, were sent to hospital for testing.

“The testing revealed that two other individuals had contracted the Coronavirus: two children of two and four years old,” said Sardar Yunis.

“We don’t allow anyone to enter the camp, and the camp’s residents must wear masks and gloves when they leave their tents.”

The Bajid Kandala camp hosts 1900 displaced families from Shingal district.

Last week the first COVID-19 infection case among the IDPs in Kurdistan Region of Iraq was registered; a member of Iraq’s armed forces who had contracted the virus while he was on duty.

The soldier is a resident of Cham-Mishko camp in Zakho, which hosts more than 26,000 IDPs. The camp was put under quarantine for an undetermined length of time.

Ismael Muhammad, Duhok governor’s deputy in charge of IDP affairs, told KirkukNow on 6 August: “We have tightened the health measures significantly in the all the camps. Any displaced individual who works outside Duhok province must have a [recent] Coronavirus test results, otherwise they are not allowed to enter the camps.”

In the Kurdistan Region of Iraq alone, there are more than 700,000 displaced people, most of whom from the Nineveh Province, according to numbers from the Kurdistan Regional Government.

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