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Ebola outbreak declared a public health emergency

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LONDON — The World Health Organization today declared the Ebola outbreak in West Africa to be an international public health emergency that requires an extraordinary response to stop its spread.

It is the largest and longest outbreak ever recorded of Ebola, which has a death rate of about 50 percent and has so far killed at least 961 people.

WHO declared similar emergencies for the swine flu pandemic in 2009 and for polio in May.

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