The Head of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Haidar Al-Sayah, has assured that the centre is on high alert and is prepared for any possible cases of monkeypox after the World Health Organization (WHO) classified Libya as one of the top countries at risk of the disease -now identified as a global health emergency by the WHO.

"The World Health Organization classified the countries of the world into four epidemiological stages, and Libya was placed within the first stage," the NCDC said in a press statement.

He said they are assessing the situation to ensure readiness for any future events and stressed the need to take a package of preventive measures.

"We initially agreed with the Ministry of Health to accommodate the infected cases in the operating departments of the hospitals in the event of recording any HIV infections.

Five cases were suspected of being infected with the virus before being cleared by the centre after conducting the required tests, according to Al-Sayeh.

He noted that the NCDC's role is limited to diagnosing the case in a laboratory while providing treatment services is the responsibility of the Ministry of Health.

On Saturday, the NCDC held an expanded meeting to develop a proactive plan to confront this disease and raise the degree of preparedness.