Obama: Ebola Is Global Security Threat

obama-bestPresident Barack Obama has called the Ebola outbreak in West Africa “a threat to global security”, as he announced a larger US role in fighting the virus.

The world was looking to the US, Mr Obama said, but added that the outbreak required a “global response”. The measures announced included ordering 3,000 US troops to the region and building new healthcare facilities.

Ebola has killed 2,461 people this year, about half of those infected, the World Health Organization (WHO) said. The announcement came as UN officials called the outbreak a health crisis “unparalleled in modern times”.

The funds needed to fight the outbreak have increased 10-fold in the past month and $1bn (£614m) was needed to fight the outbreak, the UN’s Ebola co-ordinator said.

Mr Obama called on other countries to step up their response, as a worsening outbreak would lead to “profound political, economic and security implications for all of us”.

Ebola only spreads in close contact, and there is no cure and no vaccine. The outbreak began in Guinea last December before spreading to its neighbours Sierra Leone and Liberia.

Mr Obama said the outbreak had reached epidemic proportions in West Africa, as the disease “completely overwhelmed” hospitals and clinics and people were “literally dying on the streets”.

Meanwhile in Guinea, a team of health officials was attacked on Tuesday in a village they were visiting to raise awareness of the illness.

BBC

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