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WHO confirms new case of Ebola in Democratic Republic of Congo

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A report by the World Health Organization (WHO) says a new case of Ebola has been confirmed in the north-western Democratic Republic of Congo

The confirmation has prompted health authorities to enforce urgent containment measures just four months after the previous outbreak came to an end.

The reported case is of a 31-year-old male, detected in the city of Mbandaka, capital of Congo’s Equateur province.

According to a statement by the World Health Organization (WHO), the patient began showing symptoms on April 5, but did not seek treatment for more than a week. He was admitted to an Ebola treatment centre on April 21 and died later that day.

“Time is not on our side,” said Dr Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO’s Regional Director for Africa. “The disease has had a two-week head start and we are now playing catch-up.”

The WHO said that efforts to contain the disease are already underway in Mbandaka, and that a vaccination campaign will begin in the coming days. The WHO statement further revealed that around 74 of his contacts are being tracked.

The last Ebola outbreak in DRC was also in the east and infected 11 people between October and December and killed six of them. In December 2021, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) declared the end of the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak that affected Beni Health Zone (HZ) in North Kivu Province, DRC.

The latest report of Ebola in Central Africa country means the December declaration of an end to the outbreak.

Ebola is an infectious and frequently fatal disease marked by fever and severe internal bleeding, spread through contact with infected body fluids by a filovirus (Ebola virus ), whose normal host species is unknown.

Congo has seen 13 previous outbreaks of Ebola, including one in 2018-2020 in the east that killed nearly 2,300 people, the second-highest toll recorded in the history of the virus.

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Mali declares 3 days warning after deadliest terrorist attack

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Troubled West African country, Mali declared three days of national mourning following the deadliest recent attacks by Islamist militants.

In a recent ambush on Sunday , 42 soldiers were killed in the northern region of Gao. A statement by the army claimed jihadi extremists used drones, artillery and booby-trapped vehicles.

Armed groups affiliated with al-Qa’ida, have for some time attacked military bases in the West African country. They claimed responsibility for attacks on Mali’s main military base in an attack last month.

Terrorists also recently killed 15 soldiers and three civilians in two separate operations in southwest Mali.

Meanwhile, Mali on Thursday announced the delivery of aircrafts L-39 and Sukhoi-25 jets as well as Mi-24P helicopter gunships were displayed during a ceremony from Russia.

Mali under the current Junta of Colonel Goita has been on a thread of breaking diplomatic relations with allies. It started by breaking defence alliance with the French, the junta also quit the anti-jihadist force, G-5 force but has enjoyed good relationship with Russia.

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Right group, HRW, indicts Cameroonian troops of killing Anglophone separatists

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Right group, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has accused Cameroonian troops in the Northwest Regions of killing at least 10 people in a crackdown against anglophone separatists.

HRW indicts Cameroon’s military in a string of allegations monitored in the battle between security forces and English-speaking militants seeking cessation in francophone-majority Cameroon.

According to the report, “Cameroonian soldiers summarily killed at least 10 people and carried out a series of other abuses between April 24 and June 12, during counter-insurgency operations in the North-West region.

“The troops also burned 12 homes, destroyed, and looted health facilities, arbitrarily detained at least 26 people, and are presumed to have forcibly disappeared up to 17 others.”

The Anglophones of Cameroon, 20 per cent of the population, feel marginalised. Their frustrations surfaced dramatically at the end of 2016 when a series of sectoral grievances morphed into political demands, leading to strikes and riots.

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