Sierra Leone
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U.S. Seeking to End Sierre Leone VP Crisis

U.S. officials are in touch with Sierra Leone authorities to try to resolve a political standoff around Vice President Sam Sumana, the State Department said Sunday.

But Sumana, who has gone into hiding after requesting asylum from the United States, is not being sheltered inside the U.S. embassy in Freetown.

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Sierra Leone Vice President Asks U.S. for Asylum

Sierra Leone's Vice President Sam Sumana has applied for asylum at the U.S. embassy in Freetown and is in hiding while his request is considered, a source close to him said Saturday.

Sumana was expelled from the governing All People's Congress (APC) party this month for what was described as "his anti-party activities, including fomenting violence," although he denied the allegations and has appealed against his suspension to the party leadership.

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Sierra Leone Vice President in Ebola Quarantine

Sierra Leone's Vice President Sam Sumana has placed himself in quarantine following the Ebola death of one of his guards, a government spokesman said Saturday, as the country reintroduced travel restrictions as the number of new cases rises again.

Sumana "has decided to place himself in precautionary quarantine awaiting the results of tests by the health authorities", the spokesman said.

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Britain Warns of Russian Danger to Baltic states

Russia could inflict the tactics it is accused of using to destabilize Ukraine on Baltic members of NATO, Britain's defense minister warned in comments to British newspapers on Wednesday.

Michael Fallon said that NATO must be prepared for Russian aggression in any form, and warned of a "real and present danger" to Baltic members of NATO -- eurozone members Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

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British Ebola Nurse Discharged from Hospital

A British nurse who contracted Ebola while working as a volunteer in Sierra Leone said she was "happy to be alive" as she was discharged from hospital on Saturday having made a full recovery.

Scottish nurse Pauline Cafferkey was diagnosed in Glasgow on December 29 before being transferred to Britain's only isolation ward for Ebola patients at London's Royal Free Hospital.

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360 Migrants Leave Italy Migrant 'Ghost Ship'

Italian authorities disembarked some 360 cold and hungry migrants Saturday from a ship abandoned by its crew off the country's jagged southern coast. 

Women and children were among hundreds of migrants left stranded aboard the Ezadeen, which docked in the port of Corigliano Calabro around 11:00 pm (2200 GMT) Friday after a delicate operation by the Italian navy to take control of the aging vessel.

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U.S. Gives Go-Ahead to Fast Ebola Test

U.S. authorities have given emergency authorization to Swiss pharmaceutical firm Roche for an Ebola test that can take as little as three hours, the company said on Monday.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the test for emergency use on patients with signs and symptoms of the deadly virus, Roche said.

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Ethiopia Ready to Boost Somalia Troops after Sierra Leone Exit

Ethiopia said Monday it was ready to boost its troop levels in Somalia to replace soldiers from Sierra Leone, which has been forced to withdraw its forces from the mission over Ebola fears. 

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Sources: U.N. Chief to Travel to Ebola-Hit Countries

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will travel to Ebola-hit countries in West Africa this week to raise awareness about the health crisis, U.N. officials said Tuesday.

Ban is to make the announcement at a year-end press conference at the United Nations on Wednesday, U.N. official said.

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World Bank: Ebola to Push Guinea, Sierra Leone into Recession

The World Bank said Tuesday that the fallout from the deadly Ebola pandemic will push Guinea and Sierra Leone into recession next year.

With the disease still not under control in West Africa, the cost to the two countries plus less-impacted Liberia of shuttered businesses and curtailed investment will run "well over" $2 billion in 2014-2015, the Bank said in a new report.

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