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“Massive Loss Of Life”: 3,500 Deaths As Simultaneous Ebola & Measles Outbreaks Hit Congo

“Massive Loss Of Life”: 3,500 Deaths As Simultaneous Ebola & Measles Outbreaks Hit Congo

World Health Organization (WHO) officials released new staggering numbers this week on the death toll from central Africa’s latest deadly Ebola virus outbreak. 

Image source: Reuters

Confirmed deaths in the Democratic Republic of Congo have risen to 1,536 since the outbreak began there a little under a year ago. And by July 7, a total of 2,418 what are deemed confirmed and probable cases have been reported, Bloomberg said, citing the WHO’s latest report on the outbreak.Image source: Reuters

“While the number of new cases continues to ease in former hot spots, such as Butembo, Katwa and Mandima health zones, there has been an increase in cases in Beni and a high incidence continues in parts of Mabalako health zone,” according to the report.

The report further noted that in parts of the DRC the “Ebola outbreak continues this past week with a similar transmission intensity,” suggesting while it’s still largely contained within the country’s borders, the outbreak is still going strong despite emergency interventions. 

“The Ministry of Health (MoH) and other national authorities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, WHO, and partners are implementing several outbreak control interventions together with teams in the surrounding provinces, who are taking measures to ensure that they are response-ready,” the report continued

From the World Health Organization’s (WHO) new External Situation Report in the DRC.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

WHO Expected To Declare Ebola Outbreak “International Emergency” As It Jumps Borders

WHO Expected To Declare Ebola Outbreak “International Emergency” As It Jumps Borders

In April, we pointed out that over the prior months, many public health experts had claimed the deadly Ebola virus outbreak that has been ravaging the Congo will not become a global health threat, despite recent events painting a much less optimistic picture. We also warned that despite people in the West often thinking of Ebola as a disease that only strikes “superstitious locals” in the deepest jungles of the Democratic Republic of Congo, there are now pressing warning signs and it’s time to start paying attention.

According to Reuters, the World Health Organization (WHO) is now preparing to declare an “international emergency” over the latest Ebola epidemic fast spreading through central Africa. 

The deadly disease, which can take just days to kill an infected person, has now jumped from the Democratic Republic of Congo where the newest outbreak was first documented, to neighboring Uganda. 

The number of total confirmed cases is reported as follows:  

Congo’s epidemic is the second worst worldwide since West Africa’s Ebola outbreak in 2014-16, with 2,084 cases and 1,405 deaths since being declared in August. The WHO said on Thursday that two people had died in Uganda having arrived with the disease from Congo.

Despite hopefulness that the virus can be contained in Uganda, given so far there’s been no known human-to-human cases of its spreading inside Uganda, health officials are still urging the WHO to quickly move forward with a global emergency declaration. 

The WHO’s Emergency Committee (EC) reportedly met Friday to evaluate whether the epidemic constitutes a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) amid growing pressure to immediately make the declaration. 

Reuters reports further of the outbreak

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Curious Case of The Economist: How It Manipulates Its Readers with Slanted Comment on Russia

The Curious Case of The Economist: How It Manipulates Its Readers with Slanted Comment on Russia

The Curious Case of The Economist: How It Manipulates Its Readers with Slanted Comment on Russia

The Economist magazine is an admirable publication to which I have subscribed for over fifty years, with gaps now and then. While serving in Vietnam in 1970 its weekly arrival was a major event, as we were bereft of sensible reportage about that disastrous war, and I have always considered it to be balanced, extremely well-informed, and accurate. In its own modest words “What ties us together is the objectivity of our opinion, the originality of our insight and our advocacy of economic and political freedom around the world.”

Quite so. And so say all of us. Let’s hear it for a fearless journal that tells it like it is.

Until it doesn’t.

In the issue dated December 15, 2018 there is a strange anomaly in its description of life in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a shattered African state which the magazine’s writer(s) criticise objectively and with originality. And it’s the originality tangent that is intriguing.

The hard copy which I received in France has a half-page leader about Congo, headlined “The Kremlin-style charade in Kinshasa — Can anyone stop Joseph Kabila from doing a Putin?” which was an arresting summons that indicated objective cover concerning what one might expect to be a series of parallels and comparisons involving the leaders of Congo and Russia. On reading it, however, I wondered if perhaps the writer(s) had trended to originality that transcended objectivity, so went to the website where the headline was slightly different, employing the tried and faithful “-ology” tack-on and omitting Kabila’s name. It read “Kremlinology in Kinshasa: Can anyone stop Congo’s president from doing a Putin?”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Ebola Outbreak “Worst In Congo’s History” As Hundreds Dead; Risk Of Spread To Uganda “Very High” 

The most recent Ebola outbreak spreading through the Democratic Republic of Congo is now the worst in the country’s history, with 209 dead and 333 confirmed or probable cases, according to the DRC’s health ministry.

According to The Express, efforts to contain the disease have been hampered by localized armed conflict and community resistance to health officials.

The outbreak, the second this year, began in North Kivu before spreading east to Ituri. Oly Ilunga Kalenga, the DRC’s minister of public health, said efforts to contain the deadly outbreak have been thwarted by violence against health officials and civilians as militant groups battle for control in the affected region. –Express

Two health workers were killed during the militant attack according to the minister, while 11 civilians and a soldier were killed last month in the city of Beni – the outbreak’s epicenter.

And on Thursday, the United Nations announced that at least seven UN peacekeepers were killed by militants in at the epicenter of the Ebola outbreak.

“Our peacekeeping colleagues tell us that six peacekeepers from Malawi and one from Tanzania who are part of the U.N. peacekeeping operation in the DRC … were killed yesterday, in Beni territory, in North Kivu,” said UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

Meanwhile, a USAID worker speaking to Reuters on condition of anonymity said “We are absolutely concerned about the ongoing outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is occurring in an area of active conflict, so physical insecurity is a persistent challenge and complication to the ongoing response efforts.”

“No other epidemic in the world has been as complex as the one we are currently experiencing,” said Kalenga.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

A “Perfect Storm” Is Surrounding One of the Worst Ebola Outbreaks in History in the DRC Right Now

A “Perfect Storm” Is Surrounding One of the Worst Ebola Outbreaks in History in the DRC Right Now

An Ebola outbreak that has been going on in the Democratic Republic of Congo since August is already one of the worst in history – the 7th worst to be precise – and it looks like it may spiral out of control. Peter Salama, WHO Deputy Director-General for Emergency Preparedness and Response, called the situation “a perfect storm.”

Unrest and war in the region combined with community resistance and mistrust of medical personnel are making it difficult for the World Health Organization to get a handle on the outbreak. Dr. Salama said:

“We are now extremely concerned, that several factors may be coming together over the next weeks to months to create a potential perfect storm. A perfect storm of active conflict, limiting our ability to access civilians, distress by segments of the community, already traumatized by decades of conflict and of murder…

…We’ve seen attacks now on August 24, September 3, 9, 11, 16, 21 and most recently and most dramatically September 22 in the city itself of Beni,” he said. He said that Beni was the base for the agency’s base for the “entire operation.” (source)

The outbreak is based in North Kivu, which is on the border of Uganda and Rwanda. Violence has displaced more than a million people in the area, and there have been a number of brutal machete attacks against civilians. Things got so bad that the WHO was forced to cease their operations for an entire week while the Ebola virus spread.

One of the armed groups in DRC which pose a threat to civilians and the international response to Ebola, the ADF – Allied Democratic Forces – has sufficient military capacity to ambush blue helmets from the UN’a Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO) and government forces – the FARDC.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Congo: Ebola “Bungle in the Jungle” a Planned Mishap

Congo: Ebola “Bungle in the Jungle” a Planned Mishap

Malthusian theory holds that depopulation (or zero population growth) is a necessity to control a species (namely humanity) that reproduces and consumes natural resources without limits. This is a “New Age” mantra adopted early on by Communists as far back as Marx and Lenin. The ball has been carried successively by Edward House and Woodrow Wilson, and further exacerbated by such “gems” as Kissinger, Bill Gates, Al Gore, and so forth. Much of the public and almost all of the youth (a recent poll taken showed young people prefer Socialism to Capitalism) have fallen for this mantra.

The “problem” for them is how to push it along quickly: war is one answer, and disease is another.

There has been another outbreak of Ebola in the Congo, with WHO (World Health Organization) estimates as many as 1,500 people have been exposed to it. The Daily Mail has a good article on this that was posted on 8/17/18, titled to that effect. It is a good read, as it summarizes with brevity the parameters of the disease itself.

This is how they’re “setting the stage” for this planned “mishap” tied in to the recent outbreak. Read this excerpt very carefully to see the hidden agenda:

The World Health Organization said on Friday [8/17/18] that at least 1,500 people had potentially been exposed to the deadly Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s North Kivu region, where fear of local militia is preventing aid workers from reaching some areas. But it is expected more people to become infected and could not be sure that it had identified all chains by which the virus is spreading in the eastern part of the country beset by militia violence. The region is haunted in particular by the Allied Defence Forces, a Ugandan Islamist rebel group blamed for hundreds of civilian deaths over the past four years.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Ebola Deaths In DRC Spike 21% In Four Days, Bordering Countries On High Alert

The latest Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DNC) has claimed 67 lives, up from 55, according to Robert Redfield, director of the CDC. On Friday the WHO said that the virus has spread to an area of “high security risk,” and that ongoing local conflicts have made finding and monitoring infected people extremely difficult.

Really, in two weeks, we’ve gone from 24 cases to 105 cases,” said Redfield, who just returned from the hot zone where an outbreak centered in North Kivu is responsible for 105 confirmed or suspected cases, according to the Washington Post. There are currently 77 confirmed cases, 28 probable cases in which biological samples are not available for laboratory testing, while 3,000 people have received an experimental Ebola vaccine.


Total of 105 cases (77 confirmed & 28 probable), including 67 deaths. In addition, 10 suspect cases are under investigation

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https://bola_kivu_24aout 

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Source: World Health Organiztion (WHO)

Redfield said the rapid spread of the disease was primarily because many health workers at a hospital in the town of Mangina, where the outbreak started, contracted the virus after treating early patients without recognizing that they had Ebola. The disease spreads through contact with the bodily fluids of victims, putting health workers and patients’ family members at greatest risk, notes the Post.

“In the next couple of weeks, we’ll have greater clarity,” about the scope of the outbreak, said Redfield.

In response, neighboring Uganda has beefed up precautions at the border, making it more difficult for the roughly 19,000 people who travel from Congo’s North Kivu province across the border into the Ugandan town of Mpondwe to shop at an open-air market.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Ebola Death Toll Climbs To 55 As Number Of Infected Rise; Congo Authorities Lay Plans For Crisis 

Authorities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DNC), South Africa, announced five new cases of Ebola hemorrhagic fever in the Mabalako hot zone of the North Kivu district, bringing the total number deaths to 55. Of the 69 currently infected with the disease, 13 are heath workers – just under 20%.

Photo: MSF UK

To manage the crisis, DNC officials have announced free treatment for all victims over the next three months, supplies are being delivered to vital areas, and new facilities are being constructed to handle the ill.

Health officials in Mabalako, Beni and Mangina are have been utilizing the unlicensed vaccine, rVSV-ZEBOV, which was used during another DRC Ebola outbreak earlier this year in which there were 33 fatalities out of 54 confirmed cases. The DRC, meanwhile, has said a new Ebola treatment center (ETC) will soon open in nearby Ituri province, as the currently established ETCs are at capacity.

Tarik Jasarevic, a spokesperson with the World Health Organization (WHO), told CIDRAP News that 13 healthcare workers have tested positive for Ebola, a troubling development, because infected health workers were one of the main factors in the rapid spread of the disease during the 2013-2016 outbreak in West Africa.

Jasarevic also commented on a recent UNICEF report that said children were being infected at high rates during this outbreak. –CIDRAP News

“The case distribution is slightly younger than what we might expect when compared to previous outbreaks, but still within the general range; each outbreak is different,” said Jasarevic.

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced over Twitter that 10 vaccination rings had been identified around 28 recently confirmed cases, while around 1,300 have been vaccinated.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“This Is A Very Dangerous Outbreak” WHO Chief ‘Worried’ Over Ebola In DRC

The director of the World Health Organization (WHO) is urging a ceasefire between armed groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), as raging conflicts in the region have hampered efforts to stop a new Ebola outbreak which is transmitting freely, reports the Daily Mail.

So far 41 deaths had been reported as of August 1 between the DRC’s North Kivu province, including the cities of Beni and Mangina.

As the death toll in the outbreak declared on August 1 in DRC’s violence-wracked North Kivu province hit 41, the World Health Organization chief also called for the rapid roll-out of an unlicenced drug being used for the first time to treat Ebola patients.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters in Geneva he feared conditions on the ground in the eastern province had created “a conducive environment for the transmission of Ebola.” –Daily Mail

Ghebreyesus, who traveled to the hot zones in Beni and Mangina in recent days, says that while he was worried before his trip – since his return “I am actually more worried.”

The latest outbreak now encompasses 57 probable and confirmed cases of Ebola in the DRC’s 10th outbreak since 1976, when the disease was first identified near the DRC’s Ebola river.

Beni was the scene of a 2016 massacre in which at least 64 people were killed by militants, bringing the toll to over 700 dead since October 2014.

in North Kivu, health workers are being forced to navigate their response among more than 100 armed groups, and Tedros said that there have been 120 violent incidents since January alone.

He said the region was sprinkled with so-called “red zones”, or inaccessible areas. –Daily Mail

“That environment is really conducive for Ebola … to transmit freely.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

Escaped Ebola Patients Risked Spreading Virus At Packed Prayer Meeting

Two Ebola patients who escaped from a quarantine in the Democratic Republic of Congo attended a prayer meeting with 50 other people, raising the possibility that those exposed could reignite the Ebola epidemic that was on the edge of spreading throughout the world back in 2014.

According to the Daily Star, health agencies confirmed that two of the three fugitives from the quarantine may have spread the virus before dying. Government officials are now worried that the deadly and highly infectious disease could spread as victims fail to grasp the seriousness of being infected.

Ebola

The virus appears to be spreading despite 7,540 vaccines being distributed in the DRC by the World Health Organization. Another 8,000 doses are due to be provided in the coming days.

One doctor said the world is “on the knife’s edge” of another outbreak.

“We are on the epidemiological knife edge,” Dr. Peter Salama, the World Health Organization’s deputy director.

“The next few weeks will really tell if this outbreak is going to expand to urban areas or if we are going to be able to keep it under control.”

So far, seven of the confirmed Ebola cases have been found in urban settings. Doctors say the outbreak has “potential to expand.” Following a meeting with reporters, Dr. Peter Salama said the outbreak “could go either way in the coming weeks.” At last count, 27 people have died and at least 58 cases have been reported in the DRC since May 8.

“We are working around the clock to make sure it [goes] in the right direction,” he said.

According to Al Jazeera, the fatality rate for those infected with Ebola is roughly 50%.  The DRC’s present Ebola outbreak – its ninth since the virus was identified in 1976 – initially appeared confined to a remote village in the country’s northwestern province, but no more.

Ebola

One case was confirmed last week in the city of Mbandaka, home to 1.2 million people.

Virus

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

‘Scores dead’ in Burundi clashes – Africa – Al Jazeera English

‘Scores dead’ in Burundi clashes – Africa – Al Jazeera English.

At least 100 people have been killed after a cross-border attack against the central African nation of Burundi from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), AFP news agency reports quoting a military source.

A general in the Burundian army, speaking on condition of anonymity on Sunday, said the raid by the unidentified group had been thwarted after five days of heavy fighting in the border area north of the capital Bujumbura.

“After five days of non-stop military operations, the armed group which attacked Burundi has been wiped out by our security forces. In total, we killed 105 of them and captured four, out of a total of the 121 who entered Cibitoke province from the DRC,” the general said.

“We also seized a 60mm mortar, five rocket launchers, machine guns and more than 100 assault rifles.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

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