The World Health Organization is declaring the Ebola outbreak a public health emergency. The WHO is calling for a coordinated international response to stop the spread of the disease. But so far, there is little sign of that type of effort in countries like Sierra Leone. Davide McKenzie is there and reports on the challenges that aid workers are facing.
This latest Ebola outbreak in Western Africa has already killed more than 700 people. Doctors there are struggling to contain the spread of the disease, which the World Health Organization says has a mortality rate near 90% with no known vaccine. David McKenzie reports from Sierra Leone where he described a sense of panic, but also a sense of fortitude.
Is it possible to stop someone with Ebola from getting on a plane and spreading the disease? Elizabeth Cohen takes a closer look at the precautions.
A rough stretch of weather in the southern Indian Ocean cleared. Now planes are taking off and resuming their search for Flight 370. Time is running out to find the plane's black boxes using their locator pings. Some high-tech help just arrived for the crews working to zero in on them. Meanwhile, some Flight 370 families marched through the streets of Beijing voicing their frustration. Anderson discussed the new developments with Kyung Lah in Bullsbrook, Australia and David McKenzie in Beijing.
A Chinese activist who leads a campaign to expose government corruption went on trial today in Beijing. CNN’s David McKenzie was there to cover the high-profile case. Chinese officials intent on keeping the media away roughed him up, and it was captured on video. David spoke with Anderson but that interview wasn’t seen in China; censors cut CNN's feed when the segment aired on AC360.
CNN Africa Correspondent
I have been covering Somali piracy for over a year, sailed with the USS Shoup patrolling the waters off Somalia searching for bands of marauders, and interviewed merchant sailors who had been held for months.
But nothing compares to this.
Pirates brazenly attacking a giant US flagged container ship off the coast of Somalia carrying food aid. In the ensuing fight the crew took back the ship, but the pirates made off with their captain in a lifeboat.
In his desperation to escape from his Somali Pirate captors, Captain Richard Phillips tried to escape from pirates on Thursday night by diving off the lifeboat where he was being held to swimming for the nearby US warship, said U.S. officials. The pirates hauled him back.
It was a brave attempt to get loose from his captors who are now trying to spirit him to the lawless Somali shore, according to a source well-connected to the Somali pirate scourge.
David McKenzie | BIO
The whole world is talking about pirates, since they grabbed an Iranian ship and then a gigantic Saudi supertanker. Pirates operating off the coast of East Africa, have attacked more than 90 ships this year alone.
The U.S. has sent in ships to join a NATO-led international fleet, which has battled, fended off and sunk some pirate ships. But the pirates are still attacking, and still hold 17 ships and more than 300 prisoners.
It sounds like something you’d see in movies like Pirates of the Caribbean or Captain Hook, but the weapons are bigger and it's much more dramatic because it's real life.
And the human toll is painful, as Thumani Said can attest. I interviewed Thumani in the port city of Mombasa, Kenya.
He was captured by pirates on the cargo ship that he helped sail to Mogadishu, Somalia from Kenya. The company he works for has had three ships hijacked by the pirates.
One of the hijacking incidents occurred even when they were trying to transport humanitarian aide to suffering Somalis in that lawless, poverty-stricken country that has been without a central government since 1991, and where clashes among various groups vying for power often occur.
Thumani and his fellow crew members were held by the pirates for over 100 days! He sat under the barrel of an AK47 thinking about his new wife and family. At first, he was afraid to die, and then he just became resigned to his fate. The pirates didn't treat them too badly physically, and they had food stocks stored on the boat. But they were constantly badgered by the pirates who wanted to know why the ransom wasn't being paid.
Eventually his company paid a ransom and the ship returned home. Thumani was paid a measly ‘bonus’ of $80 dollars for his troubles. While he was held hostage, he was not paid his salary.
So, as we hear and read about pirates on the high seas, complete with tales of warships and ransoms, spare a thought for people like Thumani. The 300 hostages out there right now don’t know if they will ever return home.