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China, Sierra Leone sign agreements

By AN BAIJIE | | Updated: 2016-12-01 21:28

China and Sierra Leone signed six cooperative documents on Thursday to enhance cooperation in areas including health, finance and diplomacy.

President Xi Jinping and his Sierra Leonean counterpart Ernest BaiKoroma witnessed the signing of the agreements in Beijing.

Xi said that when the deadly Ebola epidemic was rampant in West Africa in 2014, China provided medical assistance, one of the largest-ever by China to an African country, to Sierra Leone in 2014.

The Ebola epidemic occurred in 2014 in Sierra Leone, along with the neighboring countries of Guinea and Liberia. In March this year, the World Health Organization announced the end of the latest flare-up of Ebola virus disease in Sierra Leone. The latest flare-up of Ebola brought to 3,590 the number of lives lost in Sierra Leone, according to the WHO.

Wu Peng, China's ambassador to Sierra Leone, said that China is helping Sierra Leone build a West African tropical disease research center, which will help the country to improve capabilities on health and medical services.

"When the Sierra Leonean were in difficulties (of Ebola), China did not let them down. We not only transported drugs and equipments timely, but also dispatched medical teams and established biological laboratory." he said.

China provided “everything required in terms of personnel, drugs and medical supplies” during the outbreak of the Ebola, Koroma said.

Earlier on Thursday, Koroma visited the Chinese Center For Disease Control And Prevention in Beijing's suburb Changping district, where he expressed gratitude for China's help in his country’s fight against the virus.

Koroma is paying a six-day visit to China starting from Wednesday. He will travel to East China's Shandong province on Saturday and visit a steel company there.

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