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Ebola virus outbreak spreads, claiming first victims in a new region of Congo

Ebola outbreak declared global health emergency
Ebola outbreak in Congo declared global health emergency 01:29

The eastern DR Congo province of South Kivu has recorded its first confirmed cases of Ebola in the country's year-old epidemic, one of which was a fatality, the provincial government said Friday. "Two cases which tested positive for Ebola were confirmed overnight in South Kivu, in Lwindi district in the Mwenga region," it said in a statement.

"A 26-year-old victim died and (one of their) children who tested positive is still alive and being treated," it said.

More than 1,900 people have died from Ebola in the Congo since August 1, 2018, when the hemorrhagic virus erupted in North Kivu province and spread to neighboring Ituri province.

South Kivu Governor Theo Ngwabidje told reporters: "Teams from the national anti-Ebola coordination campaign arrived yesterday to provide support."

Behind the scenes: Covering Ebola in a war zone 06:18

The Ebola virus causes fever, vomiting and severe diarrhea, often followed by kidney and liver failure, internal and external bleeding.

The disease is spread by contact with infected bodily fluids and is fought with time-honored but laborious techniques of tracing contacts and quarantining them.

The outbreak is the 10th since Ebola was identified in 1976.

It is the deadliest on record after more than 11,000 people were killed in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia between 2014 and 2016.

The current outbreak was declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organization in July, after it spread to Goma, a city of about 2 million people in Congo.

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