The Committee made its recommendation based on recent developments, including the first confirmed case in Goma, a city of nearly two million people on the border with Rwanda, and the gateway to the rest of the Congo and the world.
And the country's volatile security situation is complicating matters, as Al Jazeera's Catherine Soi reports from Nairobi.
But WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said this week that a case of the highly infectious disease in Goma was a potential gamechanger, since Ebola could spread among the urban population for the first time and into neighbouring Rwanda. An epidemiologist with World Health Organization was shot dead earlier this year. The WHO's emergency committee on Ebola in the DRC has declined on three previous occasions to designate the current epidemic as a global emergency, a designation that has been made only four other times in history. The virus is most often spread by close contact with bodily fluids of people exhibiting symptoms and with contaminated objects such as sheets.
Furthermore, there are possibly another 19 fishmongers who were in contact with the ill woman before she died, may also be infected.
While Ghebreyesus said Wednesday that he hopes countries continue to contribute funding to the response, the emergency declaration is meant as a call for strengthened and streamlined worldwide effort to slow the outbreak, which has thus far infected more than 2,400 people.
Despite a highly effective vaccine and a swift global response after it was declared 11 months ago, the outbreak has proved tenacious, becoming Congo's worst ever.
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Mkhwebane's office has said that some of the criticism is aimed at undermining her investigations. He also believed Maimane's question to be honest based on the facts presented to the DA leader.
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The declaration came at the recommendation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) Emergency Committee, which cited possible increased national and regional risks associated with the outbreak.
A mob in Vusahiro village kill an Ebola health worker and loot a clinic.
The WHO Director-General said it was "time for the world to take note" of the epidemic, but he recommended that the DRC's borders with its neighbors remain open, otherwise informal crossings will occur. multiply, together with the risk of spreading Ebola. The virus has since been detected in neighboring Uganda.
While more than 160,000 people in the affected provinces of North Kivu and Ituri have been vaccinated, containment efforts have been hampered by chronic unrest in the region and a lack of trust in communities for health workers.
This was the fourth assembly of the Emergency Committee because the outbreak was declared on 1 August 2018.
The team was still monitoring the traders who had been tested.