"It is heartbreaking for me to think of the injured health workers and the deceased policeman during the attack today, as we continue to mourn those who died during the attack. previous attacks, while defending the right to health, "said Tedros. "But we have no choice but to continue serving the people here, who are among the most vulnerable in the world."
He said some groups "were exploiting the desperation of the situation" during the Ebola outbreak.
"The people of Katwa and Butembo, as well as other communities affected by the Ebola virus, want and deserve a place to receive care and a chance of survival," he said.
Help agencies seek police protection
Katwa and Butembo are in North Kivu, a province struggling with a long-standing conflict and dozens of armed groups causing intermittent violence, according to the World Health Organization. He said he was receiving additional support from the UN and the local police to protect the treatment centers.
"To defeat Ebola, we must strike a delicate balance between providing accessible care, maintaining the neutrality of the response, and protecting patients and staff from attacks by armed groups – these are the dilemmas we face in the conflict zones of the world. the epidemic and we are committed to improving the health of the people of the DRC, "said Tedros.
Attacks End Efforts to Fight the Epidemic
Last month, two attacks on Ebola treatment centers in North Kivu forced Doctors Without Borders (also known as Doctors Without Borders or MSF) to suspend some humanitarian efforts.
MSF suspended operations in Butembo and Katwa, but announced that it would continue its Ebola-related activities in other cities in North Kivu and the neighboring province of Ituri.
The two provinces are among the most populous in the country and bordering Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan.
Nearly 1000 cases in the last outbreak
The current outbreak of Ebola began in August. It is the second-most deadly and second-largest in history, overtaken by only one in West Africa in 2014, when the disease killed more than 11,000 people, according to the report. # 39; WHO.
The Ebola virus first appeared in 1976 and is one of the most virulent diseases in the world.
It is spread by direct contact with the blood or other body fluids of infected people, causing fever, severe headaches and, in some cases, bleeding.