Audioburst Search

Why Doctors Without Borders Is Suspending Work In The Ebola Epicenter In Congo

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Support for NPR and the following message come from Amelia Island, Florida a barrier island on the northeast coast that captivates visitors with thirteen miles of uncrowded beach championship golf, natural beauty and a historic district Amelia Island dot com slash NPR. Doctors Without Borders is suspending its work in epicenter of the abo-. La outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The move comes after two separate attacks on its treatment centers. They're the organization says it best. It'll be weeks before staffers return NPR's Nouri Eisenman reports the first attack was last Sunday night. Yeah. It's it's around ten o'clock. Imon Wilma Sar is the on the ground emergency coordinator for Doctors Without Borders. He says anywhere from twenty to a hundred men converged on their treatment center in a rural area called Kotla. And this that the tooth threw stones inside. And then they started to put part of the center. On fire older, logistical and what sanitation equipments after about fifteen minutes, they scattered but the center was already in ruins the next attack was Wednesday night at a treatment center, seven miles away in a city called Tambo. This was even more violent car was used to break the gate. There was men inside the divide in different teams. They start to destroy things is that the shooting the police arrive there was a thirty minute gun battle in which one officer was killed. And meanwhile, there are nearly sixty patients in the center suspected or confirmed to have Ebola many of them just picked up and ran Massara arrived on the scene soon after and he says, everyone was traumatized you're afraid for your life, you'd feel completely helpless. Most of the patients have been located and moved to a center operated by another charity called Lima. This region is the newest hotspot in Congo's seven month outbreak more than. Two hundred new cases in recent weeks. The overall total in Congo is nearly nine hundred cases Massara says despite that Doctors Without Borders has to put the safety of its staff. I really really violence. It is a very very severe incidence. When I send my teams, I need to show that they are gonna come back alive mistrust is high in this part of Congo. He notes that it's an isolated impoverished area with a history of armed conflict. That's made people wary of outsiders and they've never seen any Bola before. So it's not surprising that they're going to be suspicious when a bunch of foreigners show up and start insisting that as soon as your child or mother has a fever. You have to send them off to strangers in these plastic suits, the group won't resume operations until it can be sure that it has the full support of the community. We have not been communicating enough with population. Normally doctorswithoutborders specializes in caring for patients. But they're thinking in this case, maybe the to shift gears and focus on engaging the community. Eighty because maybe says massare that's where we can have the biggest impact Nerina Eisenman NPR news. This message comes from NPR sponsor. Comcast business. Business has always been driven by innovators. That's why Comcast business is helping you with technology that provides better experiences. Comcast business beyond fast.

Coming up next