Congo declares new Ebola outbreak in eastern province

Four people have tested positive for Ebola in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo just days after another outbreak that killed 33 people in the northwest of the huge country was declared over, the health ministry said on Wednesday.

Twenty people have died from hemorrhagic fevers in a densely populated area near the town of Beni close to the Ugandan
border, the ministry said in its statement, without saying when these occurred.

The ministry said there was no evidence linking this outbreak with the last one, which began in April and occurred over 2,500 km (1,553 miles) away.

A team of 12 experts from the health ministry will arrive in the zone on Thursday to set up a mobile lab, the ministry said.

This is the central African country’s 10th outbreak of Ebola since 1976, when the virus was discovered near the eponymous river in the north.

Congolese and international health officials deployed an experimental vaccine during the last outbreak, which helped contain its spread after it reached a large river port city..

Ebola, believed to be spread over long distances by bats, causes hemorrhagic fever, vomiting and diarrhea and is spread through direct contact with body fluids. It often spreads to humans via infected bush meat.




REUTERS

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