Ebola burial team attacked in Sierra Leone

Health workers burying Ebola victims come under attack on second day of national curfew to stop spread of disease.

    A team of health workers trying to bury Ebola victims has come under attack in Sierra Leone, as the country struggled through the second day of a nationwide curfew to help combat the virus.

    Police were called on Saturday to help the team in the village of Matainkay, 20km east of the capital Freetown. A witness told state television that the burial team initially had to abandon five bodies and flee.

    A local police commander told the Reuters news agency that "some youths attempted to disrupt the burial".

    Since the curfew came into effect on Friday, most of Sierra Leone's six million people have been confined to their homes. Only essential workers, such as health professionals and security forces, are exempt.

    However critics say that the measures could cause people to go to extra lengths to conceal those infected.

    The charity group Doctors Without Borders said it would be "extremely difficult for health workers to accurately identify cases through door-to-door screening".

    The group said that Sierra Leone did not have enough beds even if suspected cases were identified during the curfew.

    Neighbouring Liberia had temporary placed quarantine measures and curfews last month, but lifted them after street protests.

    The World Health Organization says the virus has killed more than 560 people in Sierra Leone and more than 2,600 in West Africa since the outbreak began in December.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    What draws Kenyan women to join al-Shabab and what challenges are they facing when they return to their communities?