A 2-year-old girl in Mali, who was confirmed as the first person to have Ebola in the country, is dead.
The toddler, who returned from Guinea after being infected, is also the first person to die of the disease in the West African country.
Mali’s government confirmed the death in a statement saying:
“In this moment of sadness, the government would like to express its condolences to her family and reminds the population that maintain very strict hygiene rules remains the best way to contain this disease.”
The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that more people could have the disease as the girl and her family travelled through the country by bus and so came in contact with a large number of commuters.
The WHO, while declaring the situation in Mali an emergency, stated:
“The child’s symptomatic state during the bus journey is especially concerning, as it presented multiple opportunities for exposures � including high-risk exposures – involving many people.”
Mali was previously unaffected by the disease which has killed almost 5,000 people and spread from Guinea to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Nigeria. The latter two have however been declared Ebola-free.
Cases of the disease have also been reported in the US with the latest being confirmed in a doctor who had been in Guinea working with aid group Medecins Sans Frontieres aka Doctors Without Borders.