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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
07ASUNCION202 2007-03-13 22:28:00 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Asuncion
Cable title:  

URGENT - REQUEST FOR HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE

Tags:   MASS MOPS MARR PREL PGOV PHUM PA 
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DE RUEHAC #0202/01 0722228
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O 132228Z MAR 07
FM AMEMBASSY ASUNCION
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5445
INFO RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA IMMEDIATE 0377
RHMFISS/HQ USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL IMMEDIATE
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					  UNCLAS ASUNCION 000202 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

STATE FOR WHA/BSC
STATE PASS TO USAID
NSC FOR SUE CRONIN
SOUTHCOM FOR POLAD

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: MASS MOPS MARR PREL PGOV PHUM PA
SUBJECT: URGENT - REQUEST FOR HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE

REF: A. ASUNCION 0186


B. ASUNCION 0180 AND PRECEDING



1. (U) This is an action request, see para 10 and 11.



2. (U) President Duarte, under law 3159 and Presidential
Decree 9056, declared the dengue fever situation a national
emergency February 27. In what is the country,s worst
outbreak in seven years, more than 19,189 cases have been
confirmed since January: it is believed that the real number
is much higher (perhaps by a factor of ten). There are 27
people hospitalized with dengue and 46 cases of dengue
hemorraghic fever. Ten deaths have occurred as a result of
dengue or related-complications.

SEN ASKS FOR HELP


--------------------------





3. (U) The Paraguayan National Emergency Secretariat (SEN)
requested USG help March 5 with its dengue epidemic
(reftels). In its original request SEN asked for assistance
in acquiring 20 industrial-sized fumigators and a tire
shredder. Separately, USAID/OFDA allocated USD 50,000
through the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) to the
GOP. PAHO intends to use the funds to pay for laboratory
equipment, training in the treatment and management of
patients with dengue, medical supplies, and strengthening of
health promotion activities at the community level.



4. (U) FUMIGATORS: Due to regulations, USAID/OFDA and DOD
both have indicated that they are not/not able to provide the
fumigators or insecticides. In light of USG no-go on the
fumigators, SEN requested the (U.S.-based) National Cancer
Coalition (NCC) to provide the vehicle-mounted fumigators
(from Clarke Roselle, IL - www.clarkemosquito.com). Should
NCC agree, USG humanitarian air transport may be requested so
as to expedite this emergency assistance.



5. (U) TIRE SHREDDER: LEFORT, a local vender, has been
identified by SEN for the tire shredder, they are awaiting
PAHO's decision to purchase (with OFDA funds). A decision by
PAHO is expected March 14.



6. (U) MEDICINES: The Ministry of Health requested SEN seek
additional support for medicines March 9. SEN requested
assistance from the USG March 13 and provided a list.
Paraguay has received no support for medicines to date.

OTHER FOREIGN DENGUE AID


--------------------------





7. (U) Foreign assistance to Paraguay to combat dengue thus
far has been limited. Taiwan,s ambassador received minimal
print coverage for a sealed envelope donation of USD 100,000
to a health department official intended to combat dengue.
Spain has donated 50,000 Euros. Technical health assistance
has been provided by Argentina, Brazil France and Taiwan. No
additional technical support is requested at this time.

PUBLIC RESPONSE


--------------------------





8. (U) The SEN has launched a massive public affairs campaign
which includes flyers, banners, handouts and a web site. In
addition, radio and T.V. spots have appeared on local
programming. SEN is working with the Ministry of Health to
train approximately 400 persons to go door-to-door to discuss
dengue control. The Paraguayan Military is providing three
teams of 200 soldiers to identify mosquito breeding grounds
and report to the SEN operations center.



9. (U) The SEN eradication procedure calls for notifying the
municipality or property owner of areas requiring clean-up.
If there are no results after 15 days, the SEN notifies the
District Attorney who will then take legal action.

ACTION REQUEST


--------------------------





10. (U) The Ambassador and Country Team request that State
and DOD seriously consider providing humanitarian assistance
in response to Paraguay's request. The Paraguayans are
specifically seeking USG assistance to acquire the following
medical items (worth approximately USD 75,000):

a. NS1 Dengue Antigen Virus Kit, 96 tests/box, 10 boxes
b. Anti Human IGM - MIU Chain, 1-1 milligram bottle, 2 bottles
c. Dengue IGG, 96 tests/box, 5 boxes
d. Dengue IGM, 96 tests/box, 40 boxes
e. Rapid tests for dengue antibodies, 96 tests/box, 5000
boxes
f. 8 wheels strip x 12 polystryrene (Maxisorp Lockwell C8),
60 pill holder x 96 holders/box, 5 boxes
g. 8 wheels strip x 12 polystryrene (Polisorp Lockwell C8),
60 pill holder x 96 holders/box, 5 boxes



11. (U) Post requests that DoD consider air transport, under
the Denton Amendment, for any donated medical items and
fumigators, whether donated by the USG or by the NCC. (FYI:
The NCC, prior to the dengue emergency, already had plans to
donate USD 30 million worth of cancer, dengue and other
medical supplies to Paraguay, this year alone. The
Ambassador will meet with the NCC's President on a visit here
Tuesday, March 20. NCC and the Ambassador intend a
high-profile public turnover of one container-full of
non-dengue specific medicines (sent by sea months ago) to GOP
officials upon its release from Customs.



12. (SBU) COMMENT: This is an opportunity for the USG to
demonstrate that we too can be nimble and quick in responding
to emergency situations in Latin America. The humanitarian
aid will improve the USG image amongst the population and we
could use the aid (through the press) as an opportunity to
highlight our MEDRETES and other assistance that has been
stalled by the lack of an agreement and/or government action.
U.S. military transport would not only speed delivery but
highlight the benefits of a close Paraguayan relationship
with the USG. Asuncion PD has planned a multi-faceted
outreach effort including media events, press releases,
Embassy publications, radio interviews and other means to
explain U.S. efforts to assist the Government of Paraguay in
the current dengue epidemic. Media coverage could be
expected to be substantial. END COMMENT.

CASON