BRUSSELS — Red Cross officials helping to lead the fight against Ebola in West Africa said Monday the virus is still spreading, and they’re having trouble recruiting health care workers to combat it.

Antoine Petitbon of the French Red Cross said that it’s easier for him to recruit people to go to Iraq, despite the security hazards there. He said the French Red Cross is facing an unprecedented problem: Sixty percent of people it signs up to work in the Ebola zone subsequently back out because of pressure from families and friends.

Birte Hald, head of emergency operations for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, said that after a recent surge of optimism that the virus was coming under control, especially in Liberia, it “is flaring up in new villages, in new locations.” On Monday, Hald said, a team of international experts was being sent to Mali to assist that nation’s health authorities in stemming an outbreak of Ebola there.

“Unfortunately, it doesn’t look as if we have bent the curve yet,” said Hald, who heads the Red Cross federation’s anti-Ebola effort in Africa.

Red Cross officials called on the media to get the message out that Ebola is not highly contagious The better the public understands that, they said, the more people will volunteer to work in countries where there have been outbreaks.