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Schmitt, Stefan

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Die Zeit - Germany | 18/09/2014

Ebola epidemic is a global crisis

In response to an appeal by the Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday pledged that Germany would support the efforts to counter the Ebola virus in Western Africa by supplying air transportation, assistance in building hospital wards and money for the World Health Organisation. The liberal weekly Die Zeit praises the initiative: "After months of appeals that have led to nothing, the epidemic is now being treated like any other international crisis. Finally. Certainly, an epidemic is not a war like the ones raging in Iraq or Syria, nor is it a geopolitical conflict like in Ukraine. Nevertheless the outbreak of Ebola in Western Africa is a crisis of comparable dimensions and force. Because it threatens to destabilise an entire region. Because the consequences of the virus spreading further would be catastrophic. Because the only thing that can still stop the epidemic is concerted action on the part of the rich states of the North. Those in positions of power have now grasped this truth, and that gives us a little hope."

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