UN cuts peacekeepers in Liberia after Ebola crisis

Often contracted from eating infected bushmeat, the Ebola virus can be transmitted from person to person via the blood, certain body fluids, or organs of an infected or recently deceased person (AFP Photo/Zoom DOSSO)

United Nations (United States) (AFP) - The United Nations decided Thursday to cut some 700 troops from its mission in Liberia as the country makes strides in its recovery from the Ebola outbreak.

The Security Council voted unanimously to draw down the UNMIL mission from its current level of about 5,800 forces to 5,105 by September.

The 15-member council adopted a resolution that said Liberia should be able to fully manage its security by June 30, 2016.

Liberia has been the hardest-hit country by the Ebola epidemic that began in December 2013 and has killed more than 10,400 people.

A Liberian woman who was the country's first Ebola patient in more than a month died last week in a case that dimmed hopes the nation would soon be free of the epidemic.

A US military mission deployed to Liberia to help combat the epidemic wrapped up in February as the numbers of new cases dropped sharply.

The UN mission in Liberia (UNMIL) was established in 2003 as Liberia emerged from a devastating civil war.