Congo announces 1st confirmed death from Ebola outbreak

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KINSHASA, Congo (AP) — Congo's minister of health says the first death from a new outbreak of Ebola in the country's northwest has been confirmed along with 11 other cases of people sickened by the virus.

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Health Minister Oly Ilunga said seven people with the hemorrhagic fever were hospitalized in Bikoro as of Thursday. He says four new cases and one death also have been reported in the town of Ikoko Impenge. He says three nurses are among those infected.

Ilunga says 17 deaths that drew the attention of health officials over the weekend to the region had not yet been confirmed as resulting from Ebola. He says the situation calls for an immediate and energetic response.

The World Health Organization and officials from other international health groups are in the area to help contain the spread of the deadly virus.