The first case of Ebola in the eastern Congo city of Goma was discovered on Sunday, officials said, raising concerns the virus could spread quicker in a densely populated area close to the Rwandan border.
Goma, a lakeside city of 1 million people, is more than 350 km south of where the second-largest Ebola outbreak on record was first detected a year ago. But the haemorrhagic fever has gradually spread south, infecting nearly 2,500 people and killing more than 1,600.
The patient was a priest who became infected during a visit to the town of Butembo, 200 km north of Goma, where he interacted with Ebola patients, Congo’s health ministry said in a statement.
In the meantime, unidentified attackers killed two Ebola health workers in eastern Congo over the weekend, the latest in a string of assaults that have hobbled efforts to contain the second largest ever outbreak of the deadly virus, the health ministry said.
The two people, who were community workers near Mukulia in North Kivu province, had been receiving threats since December and one had already been attacked, the ministry said.