At least ten people have died the past 48 hours with symptoms similar to that of COVID-19 in Aden, Yemen’s interim capital, local sources said.
Local news agency Yemen Time said scores of people died from an unknown infectious disease, citing locals who asserted that the dead people, most of whom from the same family or neighbors, had not been tested for COVID-19.
“A man called Akram in Al Mansoura district died then his brother died too. They both had symptoms similar to those of coronavirus,” said Saleh al-Hanashi, a resident in Aden.
“His neighbors said the man’s kids are suffering from the same symptoms,” he continued.
Local reports suggest it is a disease called Chikungunya, transmitted through a mosquito bite, causing muscle pain, nausea, fever, fatigue, and joint pain ___ as a result of the floodwaters that hit the city last week.
This comes amid warnings made by the UN on Tuesday of a real possibility that the pandemic is spreading unseen in Yemen.
“Agencies are warning there is now a very real probability that the virus has been circulating undetected and unmitigated within communities,” it said in a statement.
“This increases the likelihood of a surge of cases which may quickly overwhelm health capacities.”
On April 10, the first case of the virus was confirmed in the country, but Yemen’s coronavirus committee said on Monday that the patient has recovered and that it has tracked those who had been around him, all tested negative.
However, authorities failed to track down “patient zero”, which increases fears of an outbreak in the country.