WHO evacuates nearly 50 staff from Ebola team in Congo due insecurity

epaselect epa07802953 A view of Ngongolio Cemetery, a site dedicated to the safe and dignified burial process of Ebola victims in Beni, North Kivu province, Democratic Republic of the Congo, 29 August 2019. The death toll from the DR Congo's Ebola epidemic, an outbreak declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organisation (WHO), is expected to pass two thousand soon. EPA-EFE/HUGH KINSELLA CUNNINGHAM
By Reuters
26 Nov 2019 0

GENEVA, Nov 26 (Reuters) - The World Health Organization (WHO) has evacuated 49 non-essential staff among 120 working on the Ebola epidemic from the town of Beni in the Democratic Republic of Congo due to the worsening security situation, a spokesman said on Tuesday.

Two people were killed in clashes with police in eastern Congo on Monday after protesters in the town of Beni set fire to the mayor’s office and several U.N. buildings in anger at a new round of violence by suspected Islamist rebels. “While 49 were relocated, 71 remain on the spot at this point to ensure as good as possible or at least the minimum support to Ebola response,” WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier told a Geneva briefing. “We need law and order restored in order to carry out the vital operations.”

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Catherine Evans)