New UN Ebola mission chief to visit West Africa

The United Nations` new Ebola mission chief, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, will travel to West Africa next week for his first visit since his appointment in early December.

AFP| Last Updated: Jan 01, 2015, 11:17 AM IST

United Nations: The United Nations` new Ebola mission chief, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, will travel to West Africa next week for his first visit since his appointment in early December.

Ould Cheikh Ahmed will be accompanied by UN special envoy for Ebola David Nabarro, who is making his sixth trip to the epidemic-hit region.

UN officials said the visit will begin in Ghana on Monday and include stops in Guinea, Mali, Liberia and Sierra Leone, where the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) has set up operations.

The United Nations is leading international efforts to beat back the virus that has killed more than 7,800 people, almost all of them in West Africa.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon in early December appointed Ould Cheikh Ahmed to take over from American Anthony Banbury, who returned to New York to begin a new UN position.

The 54-year-old Mauritanian diplomat served as number two in the UN mission in Libya and has worked for various UN development and humanitarian agencies in Syria, Yemen, Kenya and Georgia.