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Asia: So Close and Yet So Far From Polio Eradication

By IPS Correspondents

Mallika Aryal contributed to this report from Kathmandu, Kanya D’Almeida from Colombo and Ashfaq Yusufzai from Peshawar, Pakistan.

KATHMANDU/PESHAWAR, Pakistan, Oct 24 2014 (IPS) - The goal is an ambitious one – to deliver a polio-free world by 2018. Towards this end, the multi-sector Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) is bringing out the big guns, sparing no expense to ensure that “every last child” is immunised against the crippling disease.

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PM Nawaz says immunisation right of every child, vows to eradicate polio

By Mateen Haider

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said Friday that a comprehensive communication strategy was being evolved which would promote immunisation as the right of every child and also called upon every segment of the society to ensure that children were being given their due rights.

A ceremony was held at the Prime Minister House in relation to World Polio Day. On the occasion, the premier met polio-affected children and their parents.

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A leap forward: Striving towards sustainable and conflict-sensitive business practices in Pakistan

Last month International Alert, in close collaboration with the London School of Business and Finance (LSBF), organised a series of three-day trainings for private sector and national and international civil society organisations on conflict-sensitive business initiatives.

The training, entitled ‘Building the capacity of Pakistan’s business sector to benefit from dividends of peace’, was funded by the European Union. The series kicked-off in Rawalpindi on 4–5 September, followed by Islamabad on 8–10 September and Karachi on 12–14 September.

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The desperate struggle of Pakistan's polio 'martyrs'

10/24/2014 - 03:50 GMT

by Guillaume LAVALLÉE

Nadia Khan treasures two photos of her sister Sumbal: one showing her bright-eyed and smiling, the other blank-faced in death after she was gunned down by militants, a "martyr" in Pakistan's desperate fight against polio.

It was May 2013 and Sumbal and her friend Shirafat were vaccinating children against the crippling disease at a rough mudbrick house in the village of Badaber in the country's militant-plagued northwest.

Agence France-Presse:

©AFP: The information provided in this product is for personal use only. None of it may be reproduced in any form whatsoever without the express permission of Agence France-Presse.

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Improving safety of journalists in rural areas of Pakistan

Approximately 100 media professionals working in rural areas of Pakistan will benefit from a training programme that will equip them with the necessary safety skills and knowledge to report in hostile environments.

The project, which is being implemented by the Rural Media Network of Pakistan (RMNP), kicked off with a workshop held in Tehsil Yazman, District Bahawalpur, on 18 and 19 October 2014. This first event was conducted by Karachi- and Lahore-based trainers, and was attended by 20 rural journalists.

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Fresh Fighting In Pakistan's Khyber Tribal Region

By RFE/RL's Radio Mashaal
October 23, 2014

Three suspected militants and three members of Pakistan’s security forces have been killed in new clashes in the northwestern tribal region of Khyber.

The latest fighting took place in Sipah area on October 23 as the Pakistani military continued Operation Khyber One, launched earlier this month and aimed at clearing the area of Islamist insurgent groups.

Khyber is located in Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal belt near the Afghan border.

Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty:

© RFE/RL, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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Pakistan Pledges Renewed Focus on Polio as Infections Rise

Report
Voice of America

Ayaz Gul
October 23, 2014 1:21 AM

ISLAMABAD— Pakistan is the only country where poliovirus is still spreading fast. This year, 208 cases of paralysis were recorded, accounting for 85 percent of worldwide victims. The country is coming under extreme pressure to contain its infections and boost vaccinations, or face isolation.

The number of children paralyzed by polio in Pakistan this year is the highest since 2000, when authorities recorded 199 cases.

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Two more polio cases confirmed

ISLAMABAD: Two new polio cases have been confirmed by the Polio Virology Laboratory at the National Institute of Health, taking the total number of cases reported so far this year to 212.

An official of the Ministry of National Health Services said both cases were reported from Fata.

Mafia, the 12-month-old daughter of Mastak living in Mera Akakhel locality of Khyber Agency, is having onset of paralysis.

The second patient is a boy. Thirty-month-old Adil is a resident of Kalanga area of Khyber Agency.

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Bloody day in Pakistan's Quetta leaves 11 dead

Quetta, Pakistan | AFP | Thursday 10/23/2014 - 16:26 GMT

At least 11 people were killed and 30 injured in a series of attacks in the southwestern Pakistani city of Quetta Thursday, including a suicide bombing at a rally by a leading religious political party.

Maulana Fazlur Rehman, head of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) party was leaving a rally in the capital of Pakistan's restive Baluchistan province -- where he had addressed thousands of people -- when his car was targeted by a suicide bomber, officials said.

Agence France-Presse:

©AFP: The information provided in this product is for personal use only. None of it may be reproduced in any form whatsoever without the express permission of Agence France-Presse.

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Another 51 dengue patients reach hospitals

RAWALPINDI: As many as 51 more dengue patients arrived in the three government-run hospitals on Tuesday, taking the overall tally to 561.

According to hospital sources, 24 dengue patients arrived in Holy Family Hospital, 14 in Benazir Bhutto Hospital and 13 in District Headquarters Hospital.

Meanwhile, the Punjab chief secretary, Naveed Akram Cheema on Tuesday expressed concern over increasing dengue patients in the garrison city and asked the local administration to expedite their campaign against the Dengue mosquito.

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Three injured in attack on polio team in Bajaur

By Zahir Shah Sherazi

PESHAWAR: Three people were injured on Wednesday when a remote-controlled blast targeted a polio team in the Bajaur tribal region's Mamond tehsil.

Rescue teams rushed to the site of the attack and shifted the injured who included two Levies personnel on security duty and a driver to a hospital in Khar.

Official sources said that the polio team was targeted in Dabara area of Mamond tehsil.

Explore — War on polio: Is it all spiraling out of control for Pakistan?

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Cross-border fire kills civilian in Bajaur

By Zahir Shah Sherazi

PESHAWAR: At least one civilian killed and two others were injured on Tuesday as mortar shells fired from across the border in Afghanistan hit a house in Charmang Tehsil of Bajaur Agency.

Official sources confirmed that two mortar shells fired from across the border hit the house of a tribesman Sheene in Babra Charmang leaving one person dead and two others injured.

The sources said the mortars were fired by the militants.

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Militants in Bajaur threaten polio workers of 'severe consequences'

By Dawn.com | Zahir Shah Sherazi

PESHAWAR: Militants on Tuesday threatened polio workers of "severe consequences" if they participate in the polio vaccination campaign in Bajaur tribal agency.

A militant outfit distributed pamphlets in Bajaur's tehsil Khar area warning polio workers against participating in the "anti-Islamic" polio vaccination drive, and vowing to attack all those participating in it.

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900 families leaving Tirah valley after military operation

Report
Frontier Post

Posted by: Imran baba in Front, National

Farid Shinwari

PESHAWAR: After the military operation Zarb-e-Azb Khyber 1 launched in Bara Khyber Agency, at least 900 families began leaving their homelands to protect themselves and their family members in Tirah valley of Bara.

The military operation launched to wipe out of the area of miscreants is underway on the forth consecutive day in Tirah valley of Khyber Agency. A great number of families owing to fear of military operation have quitted their areas and migrated to safer places in last few days.

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Pakistan reaffirms commitment to eradicating polio

21 October 2014, Tunis – In a special session on polio eradication held on the sidelines of the Sixty-first WHO Regional Committee for the Eastern Mediterranean, Pakistan gave a detailed presentation on the current situation in the country and highlighted the priority actions and procedures needed to accelerate and intensify polio eradication.

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Pakistan + 1 other
When aid goes wrong: a lesson from Pakistan on why we can’t ignore markets

As part of the response to floods in Pakistan in 2010, aid efforts to help people build shelters using bamboo inadvertently inflated the price. Now aid agencies must ensure that they don’t make the same mistakes again.

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29 more dengue cases across Punjab

LAHORE: Some 29 more patients were tested positive for the dengue fever during the last 24 hours all over the province.

After emergence of new cases, the total number of dengue cases in Punjab has reached 455 so far, according to an official.

He said Rawalpindi is at the top among other districts where the number of dengue patients was alarmingly increasing followed by Sheikhupura and Lahore.

DAWN Group of Newspapers:

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Pakistan bans TV channel amid increased attempts to control freedom of expression

Report
Amnesty

A politically motivated ban imposed on a Pakistani TV channel critical of the government constitutes a violation of the right to freedom of expression, said Amnesty International.

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) today suspended transmissions of private network ARY TV for 15 days. It has been accused of ostensibly “maligning” the country’s judiciary after it aired an interview with a man currently the subject of a high-profile trial before the Lahore High Court.

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Polio workers in Khyber refuse to vaccinate children

By Zahir Shah Sherazi

PESHAWAR: Polio workers in some parts of Khyber Agency refused to vaccinate children at the start of a three-day drive starting Monday (today) with at least 116,000 children likely to be vaccinated in the tribal region.

Polio workers in some parts of Khyber refused to carry on with the drive over non-payment of stipends from the previous three campaigns, sources said.

Workers in some areas of Landi Kotal and Jamrud have also refused to conduct the vaccination drive, citing non-payment of their previous dues.

DAWN Group of Newspapers:

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