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Infectious Disease

Ebola-region athletes banned from some events in Youth Games

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In this photo taken Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, a health worker examines patients for Ebola inside a screening tent, at the Kenema Government Hospital around186 miles from the capital city of Freetown in Kenema, Sierra Leone. (AP Photo/ Michael Duff)

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Friday it was prohibiting young athletes from the Ebola-affected region of West Africa from participating in certain events at the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, China.

Athletes from West Africa, where authorities are battling an outbreak of the Ebola virus, will not be allowed to compete in combat sports or in the swimming pool, as it is impossible to rule out the risk of potential infection, the IOC and the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee said in a joint statement.

The rules will prevent three athletes from the region from competing in those events, the statement said.

Those from the affected region competing in other sports will undergo regular temperature checks and physical assessments throughout the games, which begin on Saturday, the two committees said.

The death toll from the world's worst outbreak of Ebola stood on Wednesday at 1,069, the majority of them in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, the World Health Organisation said.