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Ivory Coast closes borders against Ebola
August 24, 2014, 12:07 pm

China’s Ministry of Commerce has announced aid worth 30 million yuan ($4.9 million) to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea as they try to control an outbreak which the WHO warns could continue for months [Xinhua]

China’s Ministry of Commerce has announced aid worth 30 million yuan ($4.9 million) to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea as they try to control an outbreak which the WHO warns could continue for months [Xinhua]


The government of the Ivory Coast ordered all borders with Ebola-affected West African countries to be closed Sunday as other nations announced emergency measures to minimize the spread of the deadly virus.

The Philippines said it was withdrawing its peacekeeping contingent from the Liberia for fear of contamination. Hundreds of humanitarian aid workers have already evacuated from Sierra Leone and Guinea.

The World Health Organization on Sunday updated the death toll since the outbreak was first reported in March to 1,427 people out of 2,615 known cases of infection.

The Ebola virus, also referred to as Ebola hemorrhagic fever because of one of its most visible symptoms, is an incurable disease with a very high fatality rate. It was first identified in 1976.

Some doctors have noted a fatality rate of at least 60 per cent, but WHO says that can be as high as 90 per cent.

Symptoms can appear as early as two days (and as late as three weeks) from infection and first include headaches, sudden weakness, severe fever and chills, throat and muscle pains. This is followed by vomiting and diarrhea.

The virus is known to debilitate multiple organ systems, leading to bleeding – or hemorrhaging.

Liberia announced its military was enforcing quarantine cordons in a number of slum areas where families are believed to be harboring Ebola-stricken people.

On Saturday, Sierra Leone’s justice ministry said it would enforce a two-year prison sentence for anyone harboring Ebola patients.

A British charity worker who contracted the virus will be flown to London, where he stands a better chance of survival, government sources there said.

Meanwhile, a group of European and African disease experts who conducted research on the origins of the latest outbreak in Guinea say they may have tracked down how the virus quickly spread in West Africa.

They say that a young child came into contact with an infected fruit bat during that species’ migratory cycle.

Fruit bats are known to be natural carriers of the virus, but are not affected by it.

Source: Agencies 

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