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World leaders focus on Ebola threat and support at U.N. – Part 1

President Obama warned fellow heads of state at the U.N. not to stand by without offering aid as the Ebola outbreak grows in West Africa. The World Health Organization increased the current death toll to more than 2,900 and reported that the country of Liberia needs another 1,500 beds for patients. In Sierra Leone, one-third of the population is now under quarantine. Judy Woodruff reports.

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  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Next: how to contain the Ebola outbreak ravaging West Africa. That was the main question world leaders addressed at today's meeting of the United Nations General Assembly.

  • PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:

    There's still a significant gap between where we are and where we need to be.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    From President Obama, a grave appraisal today that the world has not done enough to stop Ebola.

  • PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:

    If we move fast, even if imperfectly, then that could mean the difference between 10,000, 20,000, 30,000 deaths vs. hundreds of thousands or even a million deaths.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    The president last week unveiled a billion-dollar plan to send U.S. medical and military support to West Africa. Today, at the U.N., he warned fellow heads of state that they have to commit as well.

  • PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:

    Do not stand by thinking that, somehow, because of what we have done, that it's taken care of. It's not. And if we don't take care of this now, we are going to see fallout effects and secondary effects from this that will have ramifications for a long time, above and beyond the lives that will have been lost.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    The warning came as the World Health Organization announced Ebola has now killed more than 2,900 people, out of more than 6,200 confirmed to be infected. The agency also said the spread of the virus now appears to be stabilizing in Guinea, where the outbreak first began. From there, Ebola has since spread to nearby Sierra Leone and Liberia. Senegal and Nigeria have also reported cases, but it appears the disease has been contained there.

    In Sierra Leone today, the government sealed off three new districts where Ebola outbreaks are flaring. That means one-third of the country's six million people are now under quarantine. The WHO said today that Liberia alone needs another 1,500 beds for Ebola patients.

    And, in Omaha, Nebraska, Dr. Rick Sacra was released from a hospital after recovering from Ebola. He's the third American aid worker to contract the virus in Africa.

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