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Ebola outbreak the most pressing global problem to date - ICRC president

GENEVA, November 7. /TASS/. The Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is one the most serious problems to date, forcing the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to boost its fight against this deadly disease, President Peter Maurer said in an exclusive interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.

“We render assistance to healthcare systems in the epidemic-stricken countries through national Red Cross organisations and through our own activity,” Maurer said. “We have been organising training of the Red Cross volunteers engaged in this work and we support the Mйdecins Sans Frontiиres (Doctors Without Borders) organisation acting on the ground and also provide water supplies to hospitals where Ebola patients are treated.”

“We support our colleagues in raising money and promoting information,” he said. “But it (Ebola virus) is undoubtedly a serious crisis spreading at the time we are talking and the number of new cases has been increasing day by day. That is why the ICRC is so worried.”

Maurer admitted that in spite of heated discussions and steps taken by the world community, there were problems with rendering adequate help on the ground.

International efforts should be boosted so that financial commitments undertaken by various participants in this process would be implemented.

The ICRC is confident that the Ebola virus outbreak is “a crisis posing a threat for destabilisation in those countries and in the whole region as well.”

“Exacerbations in the economy are as huge as in the humanitarian sphere,” Maurer said. “The world powers and the United Nations should play a considerable role in this fight and we are prepared to back up their efforts with concrete events in the countries in question.