Emma's Feed
Dec 17, 2014

Health teams scour Sierra Leone capital in Ebola drive

FREETOWN (Reuters) – Health workers in Sierra Leone began combing the streets of the capital Freetown for Ebola patients on Wednesday, moving house-to-house as the government launched a major operation to contain infection in West Africa’s worst-hit country.

President Ernest Bai Koroma said on national television that, as part of “Operation Western Area Surge”, travel between all parts of the country would be restricted and public gatherings would be restrained in the run-up to Christmas.

Dec 17, 2014

Sierra Leone to start house-to-house searches for Ebola patients

FREETOWN, Dec 17 (Reuters) – Sierra Leone said it would
start house-to-house searches for Ebola patients on Wednesday
and impose internal travel restrictions as part of a new push to
combat the epidemic.

The measures are part of a month-long push in and around the
capital Freetown by the government, a British taskforce and
international groups that aims to make a breakthrough against
the disease within four to six weeks.

Dec 16, 2014

No need for U.S. army help in Sierra Leone Ebola fight: Britain

FREETOWN (Reuters) – Britain said on Tuesday it would not be seeking U.S. military assistance to fight Ebola in Sierra Leone where it expects to see “enormous change” by the end of January following a surge in response measures.

As a U.S. operation of 3,000 troops begins to turn the tide against the deadly virus in neighboring Liberia, calls have grown for it to shift resources towards ally Britain, which is leading the response in Sierra Leone.

Nov 29, 2014

France’s Hollande praises peaceful Burkina transition as model for Africa

DAKAR (Reuters) – French President Francois Hollande warned African leaders on Saturday against trying to hang on to power, praising peaceful political transitions in Burkina Faso and Tunisia as positive examples to the continent.

Addressing African heads of state at the opening of a two-day summit of Francophone nations in the Senegalese capital Dakar, Hollande also said that France would continue to support regional efforts to fight Islamic militants.

Nov 26, 2014

Sierra Leone seeks U.S. military help to fight Ebola

DAKAR (Reuters) – Sierra Leone appealed to the United States on Wednesday to send military aid to help it battle Ebola as it falls behind its West African neighbors Guinea and Liberia in the fight against the virus.

The worst recorded Ebola outbreak has killed at least 5,689 people, the World Health Organization said on Wednesday, as the virus has overwhelmed African countries with weak infrastructure and healthcare systems.

Nov 24, 2014

“Dramatic improvement” in Ebola outlook in Liberia -U.S. general

DAKAR, Nov 24 (Reuters) – A U.S. general in the force
helping Liberia fight the Ebola epidemic reported on Monday a
dramatic improvement in the situation there and confirmed the
cancellation of two planned treatment facilities.

Brigadier General Frank Tate, deputy commanding general of
U.S. Operation United Assistance, said the drop in the number of
cases in the country was all the more encouraging given recent
improvements in reporting capacity.

Nov 20, 2014

Guinea imam’s trip to Mali exposes gaps in Ebola response

KOUREMALE/DAKAR (Reuters) – When a sick Muslim imam from Guinea entered Mali at the border town of Kouremale last month, he did not use the main tarmac road with its Ebola checkpoint but took a nearby dirt track.

When his green Mercedes was halted at a second checkpoint and he was asked to return to Kouremale for health checks, , 70, managed to avoid them thanks to the intervention of a village chief, according to border officer Mamadou Diawara.

Nov 19, 2014

Liberia has upper hand over Ebola but support must continue: president

DAKAR (Reuters) – Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said on Wednesday that her government has the upper hand in the fight against Ebola, but warned against complacency or any reduction in international support.

Liberia’s death toll from the worst Ebola outbreak on record is higher than any other country at more than 2,800. But the World Health Organization said last week the number of new cases there is slowing. The United States has also trimmed its military force being sent there.

Nov 14, 2014

Chad security agents face first trial over 1980s killings, torture

DJAMENA/DAKAR (Reuters) – More than 20 Chadian security agents appeared in a special court charged with murder and torture on Friday, at the start of the country’s first trial linked to abuses during the rule of ousted strongman Hissene Habre in the 1980s.

Scores of people who said they had suffered at the hands Habre’s secret police packed into the courtroom, some holding signs saying “No to Impunity” and “24 years of waiting”.

Nov 6, 2014

Analysis – Beyond Burkina Faso, Africa’s ‘Black Spring’ hopes may be premature

DAKAR (Reuters) – Inspired by protests in Burkina Faso that ousted one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, opposition activists across much of the continent are hoping for a “Black Spring” to mirror the Arab Spring. The experience of Clement Mierassa suggests their hopes are premature.

Mierassa, an opposition leader in Congo Republic, wanted to capitalise on last week’s uprising that ousted Blaise Compaore after he tried to change Burkina Faso’s constitution to extend his 27-year rule. He organised a meeting to oppose any similar move by his own veteran President Denis Sassou-Nguesso.