STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

US Embassy in Kabul battles COVID-19 infections

Few of the Afghans who returned from Iran were tested before they fanned out across the country to their homes.

Published: 20th June 2020 05:01 PM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2020 05:01 PM   |  A+A-

coronavirus testing

Representational image. (Photo | PTI)

By Associated Press

KABUL: The U.S. State Department says COVID-19 infections have been reported at its embassy in the Afghan capital and the staff who are affected include diplomats, contractors, and locally employed staff.

The State Department did not say how many were affected. An official at the embassy in Kabul, who could not be identified because of not being authorized to talk to the media, said as many as 20 people were infected, the majority of whom are Nepalese Gurkhas, who provide embassy security.

“The embassy is implementing all appropriate measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” the U.S. State Department said.

The infected staff are in isolation in the embassy while the remainder on the compound are being tested, said the embassy official, who also said the embassy staff has been told they can expect tighter isolation orders.

Afghanistan has 28,424 confirmed coronavirus cases. International aid organizations monitoring the pandemic's spread in the country say the numbers are much higher because of a lack of testing capabilities as well as access to testing. They also fear the highly contagious disease has spread throughout the country with the return of nearly 300,000 Afghans from Iran, the hardest-hit country in the region. Iran has recorded more than 200,000 cases and 9,392 deaths.

Few of the Afghans who returned from Iran were tested before they fanned out across the country to their homes.

Earlier this month the International Rescue Committee warned Afghanistan was on the brink of a humanitarian disaster mostly because the government does not have the capacity to even test 80% of coronavirus cases.

Until now a handful of NATO troops have also tested positive for the infection.

At the U.S. Embassy, the State Department said a sanitization of the premises was being carried out to “prevent further outbreak."

More from World.

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

IPL_2020
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp