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Yemen: Taiz authorities struggle to dig enough graves due to coronavirus and ongoing conflict03:27

Yemen: Taiz authorities struggle to dig enough graves due to coronavirus and ongoing conflict

Yemen, Taiz
July 9, 2020 at 08:28 GMT -00:00 · Published

The ongoing conflict in Yemen and coronavirus pandemic have made local authorities in Taiz struggle to dig enough graves for the deceased.

Gravediggers could be seen digging new burial places in one of the cemeteries inside the city on Wednesday.

"We used to have three workers to dig the graves," said cemetery guard Wadei al-Gadee, who added that they used to dig "around one to two graves on a daily basis for those who die a natural death."

However, once the coronavirus pandemic started to spread, "they began to dig from seven to eight graves in a single day," al-Gadee added, which has overloaded them and forced them to start using an excavator.

A gravedigger in the cemetery named Mazin Dawwan said that he had coronavirus symptoms after its spread in the city, and complained about the "fatigue due to continuous drilling and digging," and the "lack" of "enough sleeping hours" due to the increased number of graves he needed to dig.

The already crowded cemeteries in Taiz, combined with the rising demand, have also led to an increase in the prices of graves, reports say.

So far, the conflict has killed over 100,000 people, triggering the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, according to the UN, with Taiz reportedly being the most heavily bombed city by the Saudi-led coalition.

As of Thursday, Yemen has reported 1318 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 351 related deaths, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University.​

Yemen: Taiz authorities struggle to dig enough graves due to coronavirus and ongoing conflict03:27
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The ongoing conflict in Yemen and coronavirus pandemic have made local authorities in Taiz struggle to dig enough graves for the deceased.

Gravediggers could be seen digging new burial places in one of the cemeteries inside the city on Wednesday.

"We used to have three workers to dig the graves," said cemetery guard Wadei al-Gadee, who added that they used to dig "around one to two graves on a daily basis for those who die a natural death."

However, once the coronavirus pandemic started to spread, "they began to dig from seven to eight graves in a single day," al-Gadee added, which has overloaded them and forced them to start using an excavator.

A gravedigger in the cemetery named Mazin Dawwan said that he had coronavirus symptoms after its spread in the city, and complained about the "fatigue due to continuous drilling and digging," and the "lack" of "enough sleeping hours" due to the increased number of graves he needed to dig.

The already crowded cemeteries in Taiz, combined with the rising demand, have also led to an increase in the prices of graves, reports say.

So far, the conflict has killed over 100,000 people, triggering the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, according to the UN, with Taiz reportedly being the most heavily bombed city by the Saudi-led coalition.

As of Thursday, Yemen has reported 1318 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 351 related deaths, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University.​

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