Department of Defense announces $750 million in war funds to be sent to West Africa

David Lawder --- Reuters 

(Reuters) - The U.S. Defense Department won permission to shift $750 million in war funds to fight Ebola in West Africa as a Republican senator on Friday lifted his remaining objections to the transfer.

The action by Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma will give the Pentagon enough funding for about six months of operations in West Africa, including the deployment of up to 4,000 troops and the establishment some 17 Ebola treatment facilities with 100 beds each.

But key members of Congress are still withholding about $250 million of the Obama administration's original request to shift $1 billion to the Ebola effort under an arcane procedure known as a "reprogramming request."

Inhofe, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, had raised objections over the lack of a coherent Ebola strategy, insufficient details on protections to keep U.S. military staff from being exposed to the deadly virus, and lack of a plan to transfer the effort to "a more appropriate entity."

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