Liberia distributes food in slum sealed to stop Ebola

MONROVIA, LIBERIA - AUGUST 20:  Liberian security forces, part of the country's Ebola Task Force, enforce a quarantine on the West Point slum on August 20, 2014 in Monrovia, Liberia. The quarantine of West Point, a congested favella of 75,000 people, began Wednesday, as the government tries to stop the spread of the virus in the capital city. A mob overran and closed an Ebola isolation ward there on August 16. The Ebola virus has killed more than 1,200 people in four African nations, more in Liberia than any other country.  (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images) (John Moore, 2014 Getty Images)
Liberia Battles Spreading Ebola Epidemic (John Moore, 2014 Getty Images)
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Updated: 8/21 1:02 pm

MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — Government officials have been handing out bags of rice and pouches of drinking water to residents of an impoverished slum in Liberia's capital where tens of thousands of people have been barricaded in an effort to stop the spread of Ebola.

International aid workers warn that more help is needed as the country battles not only the virulent disease but also hunger. Travel restrictions have blocked food from getting to parts of the seaside capital.

The atmosphere remains tense in the township of West Point, where hundreds of residents lined up to receive government provisions a day after authorities put up barbed wire barricades and enforced a blockade of the area. The quarantine has kept market traders from entering or leaving and prices for food and water have been skyrocketing.

Liberia is being hit especially hard by Ebola. The virus has killed 1,350 people in West Africa, and more than a third of those deaths have been in Liberia.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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