Argentina lends Bolivia trucks to support water distribution

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Friday, November 25, 2016

Argentina is sending tank trucks to its northerly neighbor Bolivia to help distribute water amid the severe drought affecting the latter country, Argentina's foreign ministry reported.

The drought has led to scarcity of water for human consumption and the trucks will aid in the distribution of water to the hardest hit areas, the ministry said.

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The World Health Organization called on Bolivia not to transport water in tank trucks previously used to transport gasoline after the government ordered the use of tankers owned by state oil company YPFB to distribute water, local press reported.

Bolivia's health minister Ariana Campero has said that the YPFB tankers to be used for water are new and have never transported fuel, but YPFB president Guillermo Achá contradicted her statement in saying that the gasoline tankers used for moving water had undergone "rigorous cleaning" beforehand.

DROUGHT

Bolivia is in the midst of its worst drought in 25 years, leading President Evo Morales to declare a national emergency in recent days. Rationing in capital La Paz has cut residents' water access to just three hours per day.

Morales fired top government water authorities earlier this month for failing to warn the government about the situation, which he has attributed to climate change.