Politics,Climate Change and Sundry issues

Politics,Climate Change and Sundry issues
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Saturday, 22 November 2014

UN security council criticises discrimination against those from Ebola-hit regions

UN security council criticises discrimination against those from Ebola-hit regions


UN security council criticises discrimination against those from Ebola-hit regions

council opposes travel restrictions, like those imposed by Australia,
on nationals of Guinea, Malia, Liberia and Sierra Leone

  • theguardian.com,

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julie bishop

Julie Bishop addresses the UN security council in New York.
Photograph: Bebeto Matthews/AP

Julie Bishop has read a statement from the UN security council
expressing concerns about discrimination towards nationals from
Ebola-hit countries from other nations.

Last month the immigration minster, Scott Morrison, announced Australia would stop granting temporary visas to visitors from west Africa. The security council statement criticised such blanket bans and urged countries to maintain links with affected countries.

“The security council expresses its continued concern about the
detrimental effect of the isolation of the affected countries as a
result of trade and travel restrictions imposed on and to the affected
countries as well as acts of discrimination against the nationals of
Guinea, Liberia, Mali and Sierra Leone,” Bishop said.

Bishop earlier expressed concern about the Ebola virus outbreak at the security council meeting she chaired on the disease.

Speaking in New York, the foreign affairs minister said: “The
security council reiterates its grave concern about the unprecedented
extent of the Ebola outbreak in Africa, which constitutes a threat to
international peace and security, and the impact of the Ebola virus on
West Africa, in particular, Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.”

She also warned that gains already made could easily be reversed.

The debate came as an Australian company prepared to open a treatment
facility in Sierra Leone, at which doctors are likely to treat their
first patients within weeks.

But Labor’s Matt Thistlethwaite says the government is being
hypocritical for saying one thing in New York but doing the opposite in

Labor and non-government organisations have been calling for specialist teams to be sent to West Africa.

“For months now the government has been ignoring those pleas,”
Thistlethwaite told Sky News. “It’s taken them too long to take action
on this issue.”

The head of the UN mission for Ebola emergency response warned the
meeting by videoconference link that there was still “a long battle
ahead of us”.

Anthony Banbury said fighting the epidemic “is going to require a
tremendous increase in resources on the ground, in a dispersed
geographic area”.

Last week 533 new cases were reported in Sierra Leone, the highest
weekly tally since the outbreak hit there, although recent data has
shown a decline in cases in Liberia, the worst-hit country, and Guinea.

Aspen Medical was awarded $20m in federal funding earlier this month
to run a 100-bed British-built military field hospital in Sierra Leone.

On Friday its co-founder, Dr Andrew Walker, said construction was expected to be complete by the end of November.

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