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Unknown forces attack Butembo Ebola treatment center



Today, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said an Ebola treatment center in Butembo, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), had been attacked and social media hinted that the building had been damaged. fire.

"Tonight, another lamentable attack on an Ebola treatment facility took place, this time in Butembo town," said Hugues Robert, MSF emergency office manager, in a press release. "This follows the attack last week against another MSF treatment center against the Ebola virus in the nearby town of Katwa.This attack has not only endangered the lives of patients with Ebola and their families, but also that of MSF staff and the Ministry of Health. "

Currently, MSF does not know the number of deaths and injuries, if any. MSF's ETC in Katwa was burned down on February 24 and MSF was forced to suspend operations there yesterday.

The Butembo ETC is the largest in the last 8 months of fighting the Ebola outbreak in the provinces of North Kivu and Ituri, and new cases are reported daily.

Dozens of paramilitary and rebel forces, including the Allied Democratic Forces, live in the area. Since the beginning of the epidemic last August, numerous outbreaks of violence against health professionals and attacks on clinics have been reported. Rebel forces have also conducted misinformation campaigns about how the Ebola virus is transmitted and treated.

According to MSF data, as of January 27, Butembo's ETC had admitted 1,400 patients, with Beni's ETC (1,370 admissions) being the second busiest. And the center of Butembo had confirmed 197 Ebola patients, against 41 in Beni ETC.

The Katwa ETC, before the attack this week, had admitted 602 patients, including 49 confirmed cases, since December, according to an MSF report released yesterday.

New wave of violence

Butembo, along with Katwa, is one of the most active hot spots for Ebola, reporting several new cases in recent days.

The Katwa ETC attack resulted in a fatality. The 10 Ebola patients treated at the clinic were, however, safely transported to other long-term care facilities. Yesterday, MSF had announced that Katwa's ETC would be closed indefinitely.

On February 20, officials in the DRC said that a nurse had been abducted and murdered in Vuhovi.

The incidents may represent a new wave of violence that follows the peaks of Ebola activity. In the first months of the epidemic, the violence concentrated in Beni and Mblanka, the first cities to cope with the deadly virus.

According to the Ebola scorecard from the World Health Organization (WHO), officials have registered 4 more cases today in the outbreak, bringing the total to 879 infections, of which 814 confirmed. The total of deaths remains at 551.

See also:

MSF press release of February 27

Koma Ebola Twitter food

February 26 Update of MSF on Ebola

WHO Ebola Dashboard

26 February: CIDRAP report "MSF suspends work at Katwa Ebola center as WHO seeks more support"


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