WHO chief on ebola outbreak in Congo

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(14 Mar 2019) Attacks on Ebola treatment centres in eastern the Democratic Republic of Congo threaten to reverse the gains being made against the current outbreak of the deadly virus, the director-general of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Thursday, as a fourth assault on a health centre was reported.
Nearly 600 people have died from Ebola in the volatile region, making it the second most deadly in history.
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who has just returned from a visit to the affected areas in DRC, insisted that efforts to contain Ebola are succeeding.
He added that the WHO hopes the outbreak will be brought to an end in the next six months.
His optimistic assessment on Thursday was in contrast to one offered last week by the head of Doctors Without Borders, which has had to pull out of two Ebola centres following attacks.
Eastern DRC is home to a myriad of armed groups, and the Ebola epidemic has deepened the political and economic grievances of many in the area.
More than 40 per cent of the deaths are still taking place in communities rather than at Ebola treatment centres.
The bodies of victims are highly contagious, and the aid group said that figure shows community mistrust is still widespread.
Tedros told journalists in Geneva that a much larger crisis has been averted.

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