A timeline of Congo’s latest deadly Ebola virus outbreak
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The latest deadly Ebola outbreak in Congo is now an international emergency , the World Health Organization announced Wednesday. Here’s a timeline of key events since this outbreak, now the second deadliest of Ebola in history, was declared almost a year ago in a region described as a war zone.
Aug. 1: The outbreak is declared in northeastern Congo’s North Kivu province, a turbulent region where dozens of rebel groups are active.
Aug. 8: The first of scores of thousands of vaccinations begin with an experimental but effective vaccine.
Sept. 5: Congo says the outbreak spreads to Butembo, a city of more than 1 million people.
Oct. 2: Red Cross workers are attacked by community members in an early sign of resistance to Ebola response efforts in a region where the virus had never been recorded before.
Oct. 17: After an emergency expert meeting, the World Health Organization says it is “deeply concerned” but the outbreak is not a global emergency.
Nov. 29: WHO says this is now the second largest Ebola outbreak in history with 426 cases.
Dec. 26: Congo bars people in key Ebola-affected areas from voting in the presidential election, sparking anger and feeding rumors that the outbreak is a political ploy.
Feb. 24: Assailants attack an Ebola treatment center in Katwa, killing one caretaker and leading aid group Doctors Without Borders within days to suspend operations there and in Butembo.
April 12: After a second emergency meeting, WHO says the outbreak is not yet a global emergency.
April 19: Attackers storm a hospital in Butembo and kill a WHO epidemiologist.
May 3: Congo’s health ministry says more than 1,000 people have died in the outbreak.
June 4: The outbreak surpasses 2,000 confirmed Ebola cases.
June 11: Uganda announces its first confirmed Ebola case in this outbreak.
June 14: After a third emergency meeting, WHO says the outbreak is not yet a global emergency.
July 14: Congo’s health ministry confirms the first Ebola case in Goma, a city of more than 2 million people on the Rwandan border.
July 17: After a fourth expert meeting, WHO declares an international emergency. More than 1,600 people have died since the outbreak began.