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Congo records second Ebola death in days: WHO

The outbreak has killed more than 2,200 people since August 2018 in an area of the country where militia violence hobbled efforts to contain it.

FILE: A hygienist is seen inside an Ebola Treatment Centre run by The Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA) on 12 August 2018, in Beni. Picture: AFP

KINSHASA - Democratic Republic of Congo recorded a second Ebola death in days following more than seven weeks without a new case, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Sunday.

Congo had been due on Sunday to mark an end to the second-deadliest outbreak of the virus on record until a case was confirmed on Friday in the eastern city of Beni.

The outbreak has killed more than 2,200 people since August 2018 in an area of the country where militia violence hobbled efforts to contain it.

The latest victim was an 11-month-old girl, who was treated at the same health centre as the previous case, a 26-year-old electrician, said Boubacar Diallo, deputy incident manager for the WHO’s Ebola response.

It is not yet clear how the electrician contracted Ebola. He had no known contacts with other Ebola patients and was not a survivor of the virus who could have relapsed, the government said on Friday.

Flare-ups or one-off transmissions are common towards the end of Ebola outbreaks, and a new case does not necessarily mean that the virus will spread out of control again.

The WHO has identified 215 people who met the electrician, including 53 health workers at three facilities the man visited before he died, Diallo said.