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Ebola outbreak in DR Congo declared a global health emergency

A declaration of a global health emergency often brings greater international attention and aid.

Health workers wearing protective suits take their shift at a treatment centre in Beni, DR Congo (Jerome Delay/AP)
Health workers wearing protective suits take their shift at a treatment centre in Beni, DR Congo (Jerome Delay/AP)

The World Health Organisation says the deadly Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo is now an international health emergency.

A WHO expert committee declined on three previous occasions to advise the United Nations health agency to make the declaration, but other experts say the outbreak has long met the conditions.

More than 1,600 people have died since August in the second deadliest Ebola outbreak in history, which is unfolding in a region described as a war zone.

This week the first Ebola case was confirmed in Goma, a major regional crossroads on the Rwandan border with an international airport. Experts have feared this for months.

A declaration of a global health emergency often brings greater international attention and aid.

PA

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