Health Authority of North and East Syria warns of disease danger posed by low water levels and irrigation of crops with polluted water

ZALIN, Syria — The Health Authority of the Democratic Autonomous Administration (DAA) of North and East Syria warned of a catastrophe due to the low level of the Euphrates River, as well as the cutting off of water from the city of Hasaka by the Turkish occupation.

On Wednesday, during a press conference held in the city of Zalin (Qamishli), North and East Syria, Co-Chair of the Health Authority Joan Mustafa spoke about the recent outbreak of cholera in the region.

Mustafa warned of a health disaster, saying that some time ago, leishmaniasis began to spread in some regions due to the low water level in North and East of Syria after the flow of water through the Euphrates River was intentionally restricted by Turkey.

“On the 5th and 6th of last month, the first case of cholera epidemic appeared in the western countryside of [Dayro Zcuro (Deir ez-Zor)] and it is a proven case that was confirmed by bacterial culture,” said Mustafa.

In related news, after some farmers, desperate to keep their crops alive, irrigated their fields using polluted water, the Directorate of Water Resources in Gozarto (Jazira) Region issued a circular explicitly prohibiting irrigation with polluted water, such as that sourced from the Jaqjaq River.

The Directorate distributed the circular to every violating person, who was also instructed they must destroy any crops irrigated with polluted water.. Those who continue to use polluted water sources for irrigation will be punished with imprisonment between three months to a year or a fine ranging from 50,000 SP to 100,000 SP.