Mariupol at risk of cholera outbreak as Russia struggles to provide basic services, says UK intelligence

Emergency management specialists transport the body of a person killed in the southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine on May 20, 2022.

(CNN)Ukraine's southern city of Mariupol, now fully under Russian control, is at risk of a cholera outbreak, according to a British intelligence report published Friday, echoing concerns of Ukrainian officials as Russia struggles to provide basic public services to civilian populations in areas it has occupied.

The report said that access to drinking water, internet connection and phone services remain inconsistent in Russian-occupied areas of Ukraine.
The occupied city of Kherson "likely faces a critical shortage of medicines," while the port city of Mariupol "is at risk of a major cholera outbreak," the report says, adding that "isolated cases of cholera have been reported since May."
    Petro Andrushenko, an adviser to the elected Ukrainian mayor of Mariupol, warned on Tuesday of an increasingly dire situation in that city, which was "being quietly closed" by Russia due to the potential cholera outbreak amid deteriorating sanitary conditions.
      "The occupiers seem to have realized that there is such a challenge," Andrushchenko said on national television. "There are talks about quarantine. The city is being quietly closed."
      Andrushchenko, who is not in the city but has been a reliable conduit of information from Mariupol, said that it was "difficult to convey" the bleak conditons of the once-thriving vacation spot by the Sea of Azov.
      "The city has really turned into one with corpses everywhere," he said. "They are piled. The occupiers cannot cope with burying them even in mass graves. There is not enough capacity even for this."
        CNN cannot independently confirm Andrushchenko's claims.
        Cholera is an acute diarrheal illness that kills thousands of people worldwide each year. It is easily transmitted, by consuming food or water contaminated with the fecal bacteria Vibrio cholerae.