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Zimbabwe's capital runs dry as taps cut off for 2M people

Last Updated Sep 24, 2019 at 5:40 am EDT

In this photo taken Sunday, Sept. 16, 2018, a child drinks medication to prevent the the spread of cholera in Harare, Zimbabwe. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi

The more than 2 million residents of Zimbabwe’s capital and surrounding towns are now without water after authorities shut down the city’s main treatment plant. It is raising new fears about disease after a recent cholera outbreak as the economy crumbles further.

Officials in Harare have struggled to raise foreign currency to import water treatment chemicals. Meanwhile, water levels in polluted dams are dropping because of drought.

Harare City Council spokesman Michael Chideme says “everyone living in Harare is affected, they don’t have water.”

He calls it dangerous because of the risk of water-borne diseases.

The capital frequently records cases of diseases such as typhoid due to water shortages and dilapidated sewer infrastructure. Some residents are forced to get water from shallow, unsafe wells and defecate in the open.

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