Steinmeier wants epidemic task force

At the World Health Summit in Berlin, the Ebola crisis took centre stage at talks meant to create plans for how to handle future outbreaks.

Steinmeier wants epidemic task force
Frank-Walter Steinmeier speaks at the World Health Summit in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Germany's Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier opened the conference on Sunday with his own ideas.

"One could possibly conceive of something like the White Helmets. Not an organisation that is always there, but a pool of experts, of doctors, of nursing staff, that one can call upon in these kind of crisis situations," he said at his key note speech.

At a press conference, Steinmeier added that a coordinated effort is most important to stem the spread of the Ebola outbreak.

"This epidemic is threatening entire structures, entire states that could fall apart … in a situation where these structures are urgently needed. Now, no crops are being harvested, public life is at a still stand," he said.

The British government is encouraging EU states to give €1 billion against the epidemic that has already claimed the lives of more than 4,500 people in west Africa. Steinmeier has already said that Germany is able to contribute €102 million in aide against Ebola.

The disease is expected to further dominate discussion at the EU Summit in Brussels this coming weekend. 

SEE ALSO: Body of Leipzig Ebola victim burnt

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