Ebola At Large In Liberia As Protesters Attack Quarantine Centre, Freeing About 20 Patients
- Loots Blood-Stained Bedding From The Center
A quarantine centre for suspected Ebola patients in the Liberian capital Monrovia has been attacked and looted by protesters, police say.
The incident happened in the densely populated West Point township on Saturday evening.
At least 20 patients who were being monitored for signs of the illness have left the centre.
Officials said blood-stained bedding looted from the centre posed a serious infection risk.
The protesters were unhappy that patients were being brought in from other parts of the capital, the assistant health minister said.
Other reports suggested the protesters believed Ebola was a hoax and wanted to force the quarantine centre to close.
The centre was set up to observe suspected Ebola patients and then transfer them to a main treatment centre if they prove positive, assistant health minister Tolbert Nyenswah told the BBC.
It is not known if those at the centre were infected with the virus, though one report suggested they had proved positive.
A senior police officer said blood-stained mattresses, beddings and medical equipment were taken from the centre.
“This is one of the stupidest things I have ever seen in my life”, he said.
A crowd enters the grounds of an Ebola isolation center in the West Point slum on
He said the looting spree could threaten to spread the virus to the whole of the West Point area.
Described as a slum, there are an estimated 50,000 people in the West Point neighbourhood.