As details emerge about the brutal murders of at least eight Ebola aid workers and journalists whose bodies were found dumped in a latrine in a Guinean village, questions linger about whether the murders will have a chilling effect on the international relief effort.
“It is a danger and it’s going to have to be something that all [non-governmental organizations] pay attention to,” Ken Isaacs, vice president of programs and government relations for Samaritan’s Purse.
Though the murders are not the first example of violence against relief workers, they are the first reported fatalities, and a strong sign of a dangerous trend in some of West Africa’s most Ebola-ravaged communities.
“There’s a lot of superstition and a lot of fear and a lot of confusion,” Isaacs said of the Ebola outbreak. “A lot of the people in Guinea and Sierra Leone and Liberia see … where the relief workers and relief vehicles go, is where Ebola shows up.”
Doctors Without Borders echoed Isaacs sentiments and called for better education of those in Ebola-affected areas. “It is evident that fear and misunderstanding of Ebola can breed mistrust of health facilities and staff. Community education and mobilization efforts must be intensified in Ebola-affected regions, and trust should be built with the communities,” Doctors Without Borders said in a statement to FoxNews.com.