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The time for academic debate on the Ebola crisis is over

September 18, 2014 2:58 PM

MEPs voted today for more urgent international humanitarian aid and diplomatic assistance to help the countries affected by the Ebola virus in West Africa (Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria). ALDE MEPs are critical of the underestimation of the Ebola crisis by the international community and in particular the delay in providing any adequate coordinated strategy and response in the effort to combat the current outbreak.

Charles Goerens (DP, Luxembourg) ALDE spokesperson for Development said "The number of new cases are doubling every two weeks, we have to move faster than the virus in order to combat it. We need 2000 beds not just to care for those already sick but also to prevent further infections - this needs to happen not tomorrow but now. The economic consequences are devastating also, production has stopped in some sectors and this makes those countries concerned even more dependent on outside help. We need to take resolute action and mobilise all resources, the time for academic debate has passed, we must act now. "

The European Parliament resolution is also calling for long-term development assistance, protective measures for the general public and medical staff and coordination on preventive measures by the international community, including the EU.

Frederique Ries (MR, Belgium) " EU countries like Belgium with B-Fast (Belgian First Aid and Support Team) have a civil, medical and military emergency intervention capacity implemented for medical or humanitarian crises. Ministers talked a lot about European cooperation, but on the field, the teams expect more, better, and faster. What are we waiting for? Solidarity is not a choice, but a duty."