Ebola cases surface in DR Congo's South Kivu province

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Two Ebola cases were confirmed in Congo's South Kivu region for the first time this week, health officials said on Friday, more than 700 km (430 miles) south of where the outbreak was first detected.

There is less danger that Ebola will spread through Goma, the capital of North Kivu province with more than 2 million inhabitants, because about 200 contacts and suspected cases have been identified and have received proper medication, said Muyembe. "It's a woman. And one of her children, an infant, is declared positive, but alive, and is being cared for at the moment".

The pair had visited Beni, in North Kivu province, which is the centre of the outbreak.

South Kivu Governor Theo Ngwabidje told reporters: "Teams from the national anti-Ebola coordination campaign arrived yesterday to provide support".

Ebola's spread to a new part of Democratic Republic of Congo is a disturbing sign that health workers are failing to keep track of high-risk people on the move, aid agencies said on Friday.

The new cases revived concern that the virus could cross the porous borders of the central African country, where it has claimed more than 1,900 lives since August a year ago.

Last month, the WHO declared the outbreak a public health emergency of worldwide concern just days after the virus spread to a major urban hub for the first time.

The movement of the potentially deadly disease to a new province highlights the difficulties that health workers in Congo face in controlling the outbreak. The vaccine - produced by U.S. pharmaceutical giant Merck - is experimental but is estimated to be 97.5 percent effective.

The Ebola virus causes fever, vomiting and severe diarrhoea, often followed by kidney and liver failure, internal and external bleeding.

A breakthrough this week showed there may be a cure as two experimental drugs were found to boost survival rates. The disease is spread by contact with infected bodily fluids.