SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)- A British navy mission has arrived in Sierra Leone in what is claimed to be part of a campaign to fight the deadly outbreak of Ebola in its former colony.
The Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) Argus completed a 10-day voyage from southwest England to Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, on Thursday.
The civilian-staffed military fleet is carrying food, medical equipment, 32 pick-up trucks, three Merlin utility helicopters and medics and military personnel to keep the treatment of Ebola patients in action.
“Argus… will be in Sierra Leone as long as it is needed. We are here to help the government of Sierra Leone to get on top of Ebola, so we will be here until that happens,” Donal Brown, head of the British Ebola Task Force in Sierra Leone told reporters.
Earlier this month, the UK army sent a medical team to Sierra Leone to work at a British-supported treatment center.
According to the latest figures released by the World Health Organization, there have been 5,235 confirmed, probable and suspected Ebola cases in Sierra Leone out of 13,703 worldwide. The deadly epidemic has claimed nearly 1,500 lives in Sierra Leone.
Ebola is a form of hemorrhagic fever, with diarrhea, vomiting, and internal and external bleeding as its symptoms. The virus spreads through contact with bodily fluids of an infected person.
Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama also issued an order earlier this month, authorizing the Pentagon to deploy troops to West Africa to fight the spread of the deadly disease. Under the mandate, nearly 4,600 troops could be sent to West Africa. Hundreds of US soldiers have already been deployed to Liberia.
The move by the US and the UK to deploy forces in Africa to allegedly fight against Ebola is seen by analysts as a pretext to expand the military presence of the Western countries in mineral-rich Africa.
Sierra Leone became a British crown colony in 1808. The West African country achieved its independence in 1961.