13/03/09 01:42 Filed in: Security Incident
Angry mobs have killed at least three Red Cross volunteers and several police officers in Mozambique amidst fears that health staff were responsible for spreading Cholera. The attacks on Red Cross staff began when a rumour spread that the Red Cross and local authorities were infecting wells and fountains with cholera.
Red Cross staff were in fact treating wells with chlorine. Unfortunately local residents confused cloro, the Portuguese word for chlorine, with Cholera and the rumour that health staff were deliberately infecting the wells quickly spread.
On 25 February 2009 two Mozambique Red Cross staff were killed by an angry mob in Quinga while they were on a safe drinking water public education campaign.
By 28 February the violence had spread to Angoche where a mob attacked a local health care center. The mob killed a police officer who had been sent along with four others to protect the centre’s aid workers.
On the same day, further down the coast in Moma district, another mob seized a local community leader and attacked police sent to rescue him.
More: Red Cross Volunteers Killed By Mob In Mozambique As Cholera Situation Deteriorates
Mozambique: Policeman Killed in Cholera Riot
Mozambique mobs kill three Red Cross workers in cholera mix-up