Ebola outbreak prompts Peace Corps withdrawal from West Africa

On Wednesday, the Peace Corps announced the temporary closure of its programs in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone "due to the increasing spread of the Ebola virus."
By JC Finley Follow @JC_Finley Contact the Author   |   July 30, 2014 at 5:43 PM

WASHINGTON, July 30 (UPI) -- The Peace Corps announced Wednesday the evacuation of 340 volunteers from the three West African countries most affected by the deadly Ebola virus outbreak.

"The Peace Corps today announced that it is temporarily removing its volunteers from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea due to the increasing spread of the Ebola virus. The agency has been and will continue to closely monitor the outbreak of the virus in collaboration with leading experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Department of State."

The press office noted the evacuation order affects 102 volunteers in Guinea, 108 volunteers in Liberia, and 130 volunteers in Sierra Leone.

As of July 23, WHO reported a total of 672 deaths and 1,201 cases from confirmed, probable and suspected Ebola in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

The Ebola virus is spread by close contact and kills up to 90 percent of its victims. There is no known cure or antivirus.

Wednesday's evacuation notice follows suspension of Peace Corps activities in Kenya in late June due to security concerns.

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