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Sierra Leone Blocks Ebola Areas, Liberia Calls Emergency

From a fear-mongering Reuters:

Sierra Leone police blockade Ebola areas, Liberia declares emergency

By Umaru Fofana and Clair MacDougall | Aug 7, 2014

(Reuters) – Police and soldiers in Sierra Leone blockaded rural areas hit by the deadly Ebola virus on Thursday, a senior officer said, after neighboring Liberia declared a state of emergency to tackle the worst-ever outbreak of the disease, which has killed 932 people. Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf announced emergency measures late on Wednesday that will, for 90 days, allow her government to curtail civil rights by imposing quarantines on badly affected communities to contain an epidemic that has struck four West African nations…

In eastern Sierra Leone – the worst-hit area of the country – the head of police said security forces deployed last night "to establish a complete blockade" of Kenema and Kailahun districts, setting up 16 checkpoints on major roads.

"No vehicles or persons are allowed into or out of the districts," Alfred Karrow-Kamara told Reuters, saying the measures would last for an initial 50-day period. He said traders who had registered with security agencies would be able to bring in food and medicines. Security forces would mount foot patrols to ensure civilians did not slip past their roadblocks through the bush.

These countries sure are going to a lot of trouble for a disease that we’re told is very hard to contract.

In Liberia, where the death toll is rising fastest, authorities on Wednesday shut a major hospital after its Cameroonian director died of Ebola and six other staff tested positive, including two nuns and a 75-year-old Spanish priest…

With Liberian troops being deployed to quarantine badly hit communities, Johnson-Sirleaf said the state of emergency was necessary for "the very survival of our state and for the protection of the lives of our people".

The military deployment – Operation White Shield – is expected to be fully in place by Friday, officials said…

"Operation White Shield"? That’s just what some would call it.

After a trial drug was administered to two U.S. charity workers infected in Liberia, three of the world’s leading Ebola specialists urged the WHO to offer people in West Africa the chance to take experimental drugs to fight the disease.

Liberian authorities have said they are willing to authorise in-country clinical trials. U.S. President Barack Obama said on Wednesday he lacked enough information to approve the use of experimental drugs, adding that Ebola could be controlled with a strong public health response. The WHO said it would ask medical ethics experts to explore emergency use of experimental treatments.

And if there are terrible unforeseen side effects, guess who will get the blame for the rest of time?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, August 7th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

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