West Africa

Ebola and "the perfect storm"

LONDON, 24 September 2014 (IRIN) - The new figures from the World Health Organization's (WHO) Ebola Response Team are sobering. If cases in the three worst affected countries continue to rise at the present rate, by the beginning of November more than 20,000 people in West Africa will have been infected. And despite earlier suggestions that this might be a less deadly strain of the Ebola virus, allowing half its victims to recover, the new figures show a much higher fatality rate, in the region of 70 percent. full report

West Africa gears up to contain Ebola spread

DAKAR/OUGADOUGOU, 22 September 2014 (IRIN) - As the Ebola caseload rises to over 5,350, aid agencies and governments in countries not yet affected by the deadly virus are gearing up for its potential spread across new borders by pre-positioning supplies, training health workers, identifying isolation centres, and disseminating prevention campaign messages, among other activities. full report

Côte d'Ivoire refugees stuck in Liberia due to Ebola crisis

ABIDJAN, 19 September 2014 (IRIN) - Halted for several months, the voluntary repatriation of Ivoirian refugees in Liberia was to have resumed in July. However, the Ebola outbreak in neighbouring Liberia has led the Ivoirian authorities to close the country's borders to prevent the disease from spreading, suspending refugee returns until further notice. full report

Ebola's economic impact hits Sierra Leone citizens

FREETOWN, 18 September 2014 (IRIN) - As the World Bank predicts billions of dollars could be drained from Ebola-affected countries by the end of next year, IRIN spoke to Freetown residents to gauge how the crisis was affecting their lives. full report

Cameroon border towns no safe haven for Nigerian refugees

MAROUA (CAMEROON), 17 September 2014 (IRIN) - Nigerians fleeing Boko Haram violence at home and seeking refuge in Cameroon border towns are still not safe. full report

Turning away the Ebola dying

MONROVIA, 17 September 2014 (IRIN) - A US announcement on 16 September to send 3,000 troops to help tackle the Ebola outbreak in Liberia was welcomed with relief by health workers, who are losing the battle to contain the disease. full report

How to boost food production in Africa

ADDIS ABABA, 15 September 2014 (IRIN) - Smallholder farmers, who hold over 80 percent of all farms in sub-Saharan Africa, are struggling to adapt to rapidly rising temperature and erratic rains, according to the 2014 Africa Agriculture Status Report (AASR), released on 3 September in Addis Ababa. full report

Liberian Ebola burial teams stressed, traumatized

MONROVIA, 12 September 2014 (IRIN) - As the Ebola death toll mounts in Liberia, burial teams are having to contend with physical risk and trauma as they take charge of safely burying the dead, often in the face of local anger. full report

Northern Nigeria: ruined lives

MAIDUGURI, 4 September 2014 (IRIN) - Thousands have died in the violence in Nigeria’s northeast between Boko Haram insurgents and the security forces, with no end in sight to the bloodletting. full report

Mistrust of government spurs Ebola spread

NAIROBI, 3 September 2014 (IRIN) - Decades of corruption, deep-rooted mistrust of government and weak public services in Liberia have hastened the spread of the Ebola virus, and much more needs to be done to bridge a communication gap between government and citizens, say civil society groups and analysts. full report