The Democratic Republic of the Congo has announced a new Ebola epidemic in the western city of Mbandaka on Monday, more than 1,000 km from the ongoing outbreak of the same deadly virus in the east.

Health Minister Eteni Longondo said four people who died in Mbandaka had been confirmed positive after testing at the national biomedical laboratory in the capital, Kinshasa.

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“We have a new Ebola epidemic in Mbandaka,” Longondo told reporters. “Vaccine and medical aid will be deployed there quickly.”

This outbreak was confirmed by the Director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Gebrejes, who tweeted: “This outbreak is a reminder that #COVID19 is not the only threat to human health.”

Congo is trying to end the Ebola epidemic nearly two years near the eastern border with Rwanda and Uganda which has killed more than 2,200 people. This is the second most deadly plague in the world.

In April, the country was days away from declaring Ebola-free when a new of the outbreak was announced in the east, the tenth of the discovery of the virus since 1976. No new cases have been found there for more than 30 days.

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