Since the beginning of the epidemic in August, 97 children have died as a result of the viral disease, including 65 under the age of five, the group said.

And the number of new cases has increased in January, from twenty a week to more than 40, according to the charity. In the last three weeks of January alone, 120 new cases were recorded.

Ebola – which causes fever, severe headaches and, in some cases, haemorrhage – kills on average about half of those infected, although the last episode has a mortality rate of about 60% .

The current epidemic in Congo is the second and deadliest in history, overtaken by only one in West Africa in 2014, when the disease killed more than 11,000 people, according to the World Health Organization .

In total, Congo has recorded 806 cases since August, said Saturday the Ministry of Health. Of these cases, 745 are confirmed and 61 are probable. There were 505 cases resulting in death.

"We are at a crossroads, and if we do not take urgent action to contain this outbreak, the epidemic could last another six months, if not all year," said Heather Kerr, National Director of Health. Save the Children in Congo, in a statement.

"It is important to convince communities that the Ebola virus is an urgent and real concern." People disrupted funerals because they did not think the deceased had succumbed to the virus. They thought they were spreading the Ebola virus, "she added.

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Efforts to contain the epidemic have been stifled by insecurity and violence in the east of the country.

The UN Public Health Agency estimates that more than one million refugees and internally displaced people are traveling to the provinces of North Kivu and Ituri and come out. This movement is a potential risk factor for the spread of the Ebola virus.

North Kivu, which includes the cities of Beni, Kalunguta and Mabalako, is the epicenter of the epidemic, although cases have been reported in neighboring Ituri, according to the Organization. World Health Organization.

The two provinces are among the most populous in the country and bordering Uganda, Rwanda and South Sudan.

"Many children are left alone [because of the virus] for different reasons. In some cases, their parents are in the hospital or work in the field. Other children were orphans, "said Marie-Claire Mbombo, a Save the Children Child Protection Officer.

"Children left alone are at increased risk of sexual abuse or work, some of them sell peanuts on the side of the road to get out of it," she said. added.