AU said:- Our Soldiers In Somalia Not Poisoned..


Halkaan ka akhri

The African Union Mission in Somalia has ruled out water poisoning as the cause of a ‘‘strange’’ disease that has struck its soldiers in Mogadishu.

Amisom spokesman Gaffel Nkolokosa said in Nairobi on Monday that the organisation was waiting for an official medical report on what has made Ugandan and Burundian soldiers to fall sick.

The soldiers have been admitted to Aga Khan Hospital. “It is not true the water was poisoned,” he said. The AU soldiers are defending the Somali government from an array of Islamic rebels fighting to topple it. Al-Shabaab, the biggest of the rebel groups, had claimed that it poisoned water used by Amisom.

In Kampala, defence and military spokesperson Felix Kulayigye confirmed that 11 UPDF soldiers admitted to hospital had been discharged. Two of the six remaining soldiers are still in intensive care.

The rest of the soldiers have been released and would not be returning to their camp in Somalia, sources have said. Seventeen Ugandan soldiers were flown to Aga Khan Hospital after exhibiting symptoms similar to those afflicting Burundian troops.

Doctors have also confirmed that the Ugandans had not been poisoned as had earlier been claimed by al-Shabaab. Symptoms of the illness include fever, swelling in the lower limbs and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes).

The illness is believed to be Leptospirosis, also known as Weil’s syndrome. It is said even the locals around the Amisom bases were suffering the same ailment, thus ruling out poisoning. The World Health Organisation has been carrying out investigations but is yet to release results.

Source: Daily Nation

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