Senegal re-opens border with Guinea as Ebola infection rate dips

DAKAR – SENEGAL on Monday re-opened its land border with Guinea amid signs that the infection rate of the Ebola virus had slowed in West Africa.

The move comes 11 days after the United Nations special envoy on Ebola, David Nabarro, announced that the Ebola outbreak was slowing down in the region.

The border closure was lifted after Guinea had made “significant efforts … to counter the Ebola epidemic,” the Senegalese Interior Ministry said in a statement.

Senegal will, however, continue to perform health checks at all border posts.

Senegal decided to close its land, air and sea borders with Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – the three countries worst hit by the Ebola outbreak – after it registered its first and only case on August 21, a patient who had entered the country from Guinea.

The air and sea borders were re-opened in November.

Guinea, where the Ebola outbreak started in December 2013, has reported 2,871 cases and 1,876 deaths, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Worldwide, the number of infected people has reached 21,724 worldwide, with more than 8,600 deaths. -Sapa-dpa