April 19, 2019 / 4:09 PM / a month ago

Attacks on hospital in Ebola zone kill Cameroonian doctor

GOMA, Democratic Republic of Congo, April 19 (Reuters) - A ttacks on a hospital at the epicentre of Democratic Republic of Congo’s Ebola outbreak have killed a Cameroonian doctor and injured several others, the local mayor said on Friday.

Two separate attacks on Thursday and Friday targeted the hospital in the city of Butembo, one of the locations where the second-largest Ebola epidemic in history is spreading at its fastest rate since being declared last August, said Mayor Sylvain Kanyamanda.

World Health Organization (WHO) director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus confirmed on Twitter that one person had died and others had been injured at the hospital. He did not identify the deceased.

“This is a very sad day,” Tedros wrote. “Health workers are working around the clock to save lives. Health workers are #NotATarget.”

It was not immediately clear who was behind the attacks or whether there were any Ebola patients inside the hospital.

A spate of attacks have hit Ebola treatment centres since February, hastening the spread of the virus. The assailants have mostly been unidentified but are believed to comprise both members of local militia and community members who distrust the response efforts.

The Ebola outbreak in eastern Congo’s North Kivu and Ituri provinces is believed to have killed 843 people and infected over 450 more so far. (Reporting By Fiston Mahamba; Additional reporting by Stanis Bujakera in Kinshasa and Giulia Paravicini in Brussels; Writing by Aaron Ross, editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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