The Ebola crisis in West Africa no longer poses a global public health threat, although countries must remain vigilant and make sure they can respond rapidly to flare-ups.

This was the main message from the World Health Organization (WHO) who put out a statement on Tuesday.

Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the UN health agency, says WHO accept the view of their international expert panel, and that the Ebola outbreak in West Africa "is no longer a Public Health Emergency of International Concern."

However, she urges countries to maintain a "high level of vigilance and response capacity," in order to prevent Ebola infections and rapidly detect and respond to flare-ups.

The expert panel also concludes that the likelihood of international spread by air travel is extremely low, and calls for the lifting of any travel and trade restrictions relating to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, the three countries worst affected by the epidemic.