Attack won’t distract polio eradication campaign, says WHO
KARACHI - An official of Worth Health Organisation said that the attack on the officials of WHO team would not distract the UN agency from the progress it was making in Pakistan, as the country was closer than ever to eradication of the disease. Emergency Coordinator for Polio Eradication - Pakistan World Health Organisation, Dr Elias Durry said in a statement on Tuesday that the WHO, UNICEF and all polio partners remain committed to supporting the Government of Pakistan and the people of Pakistan in their efforts to eradicate polio. He said that the WHO was grateful to the Pakistan authorities for launching an investigation into this event to determine more clearly the circumstances.“Incidents like these highlight the incredible bravery of the more than 200,000 mainly Pakistani volunteers who run every vaccination campaign. The vaccinators, social mobilizers and frontline staff are the heroes of this campaign”, he added.Giving details of the incident, the statement said that on the morning on July 17 2012, one WHO staff member and one international consultant were injured, when their vehicle was shot at by armed men. The two men working for WHO are in stable condition. Both the men were supporting the currently-ongoing polio National Immunisation Days. At this point, there is no evidence to suggest that this was a deliberate or targeted attack against polio eradication efforts or WHO. Durry said that WHO is grateful to the Pakistani medical professionals for the rapid and high-quality medical aid provided.ANTI-POLIO DRIVE STARTS IN DIST WEST: The 3-day anti-polio drive launched on Tuesday in different areas of district West including Orangi, Baldia, Site and Keemari.According to a statement, MPA Saifuddin Khalid along with Additional Deputy Commissioner West, Syed Junaid Ahmed and Administrator West, Qamar Sheikh administered anti-polio vaccine drops to children in different areas of the district West to launch campaign.Speaking on the occasion, they appreciated the performance polio team. They also directed the officials concerned to employ all available resources and make all out efforts to make the campaign against polio successful.