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"Although we did not expect to face a tenth epidemic so early, the detection of the virus is an indicator of the proper functioning of the surveillance system", Health Minister Oly Ilunga said.

Julie Hall, chief of staff at the International Federation of the Red Cross, said the Ebola response in North Kivu would be a "highly complex" operation.

The resurgence of the disease in North Kivu, an active conflict area that houses more than 1 million displaced people, will present fresh challenges to the authorities.

According to an African media report on Monday, the outbreak began in early July, and symptoms included fever, diarrhea, vomiting, and nose bleeds. Travel into and out of the village has been blocked.

The DRC said there was no evidence to suggest the new outbreak was connected to the previous event, which resulted in 54 confirmed illnesses, 33 of them fatal.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has experienced nine outbreaks of the Ebola virus since 1976, when the nation was called Zaire.

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The latest outbreak was found in the province of North Kivu, near the Congo's border with Uganda. "This allows us to have a head start in response to this cluster", Matshidiso Moeti, the WHO's regional director for Africa, says in the organization's statement.

The Ministry of Health of the Democratic of the Congo (DRC) informed WHO that four out of six samples tested positive for Ebola virus at the Institut National de Recherche Biomédicale (INRB) in Kinshasa.

Researchers have not yet identified the particular strain of ebola causing the new outbreak.

An worldwide delegation has arrived in the town of Beni in Democratic Republic of Congo, 30 km (18 miles) from where an Ebola outbreak was declared, the World Health Organisation and Congolese officials said on Thursday. "The major barrier will be safely accessing the affected population".

In the worst outbreak of Ebola, the disease struck the West African states of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in 2013-15, killing more than 11,300 people.

Jeremy Konyndyk, an aid expert at the Center for Global Development, said other recent Ebola outbreaks had fortunately been in relatively safe and stable areas.


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