Monrovia, Feb 20: Liberia said today it was lifting nationwide curfews and re-opening borders shut last year at the height of the Ebola crisis, after the retreat of an epidemic that has killed thousands.
"President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has ordered the lifting of the curfew imposed nationwide. It takes effect beginning Sunday, February 22," a statement from the presidency said.
"She has also ordered the re-opening of all the country's main borders that were ordered closed during the Ebola outbreak."
The WHO said today 9,442 people had died in the outbreak, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, although it has admitted that the real picture could be far worse as many fatal cases may not have been reported. The three countries have seen new infections drop to a tenth of the numbers being reported at the September-October peak of the epidemic, however.
Liberia, which has recorded the most deaths and was hardest hit at the height of the epidemic, is leading the recovery, reporting just a handful of new confirmed cases each week. The presidency said "health protocols" would prevent the importation of the virus through any of the re-opened crossing points to Guinea and Sierra Leone, which were closed as part of the state-of-emergency.