Fijian soldier in Iraq who died of heart attack tested Covid-19 positive

A Fijian soldier who died of a heart attack in Iraq this week had tested positive for Covid-19, says the United Nations Peacekeeping Office in New York.

The deceased was identified as senior nurse Warrant Officer Tomasi Dau Saumadu.

José Luis Díaz of the UN Peacekeeping Strategic Communications Department said the soldier was with the United Nations Guard Unit (UNGU) and died on March 30 in Baghdad.

“The cause of death is believed to be cardiac arrest,” he told the Fiji Times.

“As of April 2, having conducted extensive testing, we can confirm that within the Baghdad-based UNGU, there were 90 positive cases (there are 372 UNGU members).

“The soldier was among the Covid-19 positive cases and had mild symptoms.”

The UN Mission in Iraq conveyed its heartfelt condolences to the UNGU and the soldier’s family and friends for their loss.

“In honour of his contribution, the mission flew the United Nations flag throughout Iraq at half-mast on March 30.”

Mr Diaz said all members of the UNGU, including Fijian soldiers who had tested positive, were currently in quarantine.

“The majority are asymptomatic. Thirty-three have symptoms, mostly mild. All cases are being closely monitored by the UN medical team and those requiring treatments are receiving full medical attention.”


Photo file RNZ Pacific