Saudi Arabia has confirmed that a man has died in Jeddah after displaying symptoms of the Ebola virus, in what could be the first known fatality outside Africa.  

The man had recently returned from a business trip to Sierra Leone, one of four African countries involved in the outbreak that has claimed 900 lives in 2014. The cause of death for the man was given as cardiac arrest, according to the kingdom’s Health Ministry.

Ebola is described as a viral haemorrhagic fever by the World Health Organisation. The fatality rate varies between 55 per cent and 90 per cent depending on how early a sufferer is treated.

Earlier this year, Saudi Arabia restricted visas to pilgrims from several West African countries amid concerns over the spread of the disease.

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