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Nigeria's health ministry to hold an emergency Ebola meeting

Nigeria's health minister will hold an emergency meeting of state health commissioners today as West Africa struggles to halt the deadly Ebola virus, amid growing concern at the toll among healthcare workers. Nigeria on Sunday confirmed a fresh case of Ebola in a doctor whose husband died from the virus, adding to a growing list of those providing healthcare in West Africa to be hit by the epidemic. Nigeria’s medics have paid a heavy price in the outbreak: of the six people who have died from the disease in Africa's most populous nation, two have been doctors and two others nurses.


Iraqi forces besiege town Amerli

Iraqi forces have reached the besieged town of Amerli in northern Iraq, where thousands have been trapped by jihadists. Military officials say the apparent breakthrough came amid fresh US air strikes on Islamic State positions. Fifteen IS fighters are said to have been captured. The UK, France and Australia joined the US in dropping humanitarian aid. Some 15,000 minority Shia Turkmen in Amerli have been surrounded by Islamic State militants for two months. The Military says the Iraqi Army and volunteer militia entered the town on Sunday and had broken the siege, However Amerli remains dangerous because of roadside bombs left behind by IS militants.


300 genetic mutations found in Ebola virus

researchers say Genetic studies of some of the earliest Ebola cases in Sierra Leone reveal more than 300 genetic changes in the virus as it leapt from person to person, changes that could blunt the effectiveness of diagnostic tests and experimental treatments now in development. The findings, published in Science, suggest the virus is mutating quickly and in ways that could affect current diagnostics and future vaccines and treatments, such as GlaxoSmithKline's Ebola vaccine, which was just fast-tracked to begin clinical trials, or the antibody drug ZMapp, being developed by California biotech Mapp Biopharmaceutical. The findings come as the World Health Organisation said that the epidemic could infect more than 20 000 people and spread to more countries.

3million Syrians now registered as refugees

The UN's refugee agency says. More than three million Syrians are now registered as refugees and the desperate crisis is only getting worse. The UNHCR says Syria is now "the biggest humanitarian emergency of our era" with almost half of all Syrians forced to flee their homes. The majority of refugees have fled to countries neighbouring Syria, with most now seeking shelter in Lebanon. More than 190,000 have been killed in Syria's three-year civil war. Opposition groups in Syria have been fighting forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad since his government violently suppressed protests against his rule in March 2011. The situation has been worsened in recent months by the formation and advance of the Islamic State group, which now controls large swathes of Syria and Iraq.

Israeli strike kills three Hamas commander

An Israeli air strike on a house in Gaza has killed three senior Hamas military commanders as Israel vowed to continue its campaign. Hamas told media, Mohammed Abu Shamala, Mohammed Barhoum and Raed al-Attar died in the air strike near the southern town of Rafah. Palestinian rescue services said, they were among six people killed. Hostilities resumed on Tuesday, with each side blaming the other for the collapse of peace talks in Cairo. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to continue the campaign against Gaza militants until "full security and quiet" are achieved for Israeli citizens. Six weeks of fierce fighting have left at least 2,103 people dead, all but 67 of them Palestinians and most of them said to be civilians.

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