UN launches cholera plan for Haiti but needs funds

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has announced a $2.2 billion initiative to eradicate cholera in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, vowing to work aggressively to secure donations for the ambitious but still mostly unfunded 10-year plan.

Ban says bilateral and multilateral donors have so far given $215 million and the U.N. has committed another $23.5 million for the initiative that will mostly focus on improving clean water and sanitation infrastructure. But Ban says Haiti alone will need $500 million over the next two years to implement its national cholera plan.

Cholera has killed at least 7,759 people in Haiti since the outbreak started in October 2010, likely brought to the country by a unit of U.N. peacekeepers from Nepal. More than 420 have died in the Dominican Republic, which shares the same island as Haiti.

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