MONROVIA (AFP) - Five patients have died in Liberia of suspected Ebola fever, the government said on Monday, as neighbouring Guinea battled an outbreak of the virus which has killed dozens.
"As of this morning six cases have been reported of which five have already died - four female adults and one male child. One of the suspected cases, a female child, is under treatment," Health Minister Walter Gwenigale said in a statement.
The cases came from Guinea for treatment to hospitals in the northern Liberian county of Lofa, Mr Gwenigale said, adding that inspectors had been in the area since Friday.
"The team is already investigating the situation, tracing contacts, collecting blood samples and sensitising local health authorities on the disease," he added.
At least 59 people have died in an outbreak of the virulent virus raging through Guinea's southern forests, according to the government in Conakry.
Analyses of samples conducted by the Pasteur Institute in the French city of Lyon showed that the Guinean cases were due to the Ebola virus.