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U.S. Continues To Respond To Syrian Crisis

Noting “[t]he two-year anniversary of the Syria uprising coincides with another dark milestone: over one million refugees have fled Syria,” Anne Richard, assistant secretary of state for population, refugees and migration, writes in the State Department’s “DipNote” blog, “This escalating crisis … is challenging all of us to do more.…

USAID Blog Examines Water Management Issues In The Middle East

The first three entries of a four-part series, titled “USAID in the Middle East,” have been published in the agency’s “IMPACTblog.” The first post discusses the use of data to improve water management in the region (Harris, 3/20). The second post looks at the use of the Famine Early Warning…

Strain Of Polio From Pakistan Found In Egyptian Sewers; Vaccination Drives Planned

“Pakistani health officials Monday called for infants leaving the country to be issued polio vaccinations at airports after virus samples linked to a southern Pakistani city were discovered in Egypt,” Agence France-Presse reports. “Two sewage samples from Cairo were analyzed and found to resemble a recently discovered strain in the Pakistani city…

U.N. Calls For Additional Funding For Humanitarian Response In Syria

“As fighting continues in Syria’s civil war, the United Nations has said that it will be forced to cut already reduced food rations to hundreds of thousands of refugees unless a huge cash injection is found,” Al Jazeera reports. “About four million Syrians rely on international assistance to cope with…

Gunmen In Pakistan Kill Police Officer Escorting Polio Vaccination Workers

In the latest round of violence affecting health workers in Pakistan, “[g]unmen riding on a motorcycle shot and killed a police officer protecting polio workers during a U.N.-backed vaccination campaign in northwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, the police said,” the Associated Press reports (Khan, 1/29). The policeman, who was escorting two…

Roadside Bomb Kills 2 More Polio Workers In Pakistan

“A roadside bomb killed two Pakistani polio workers on their way to vaccinate children in a northwestern tribal region near the Afghan border on Thursday, an official said,” the Associated Press reports, noting, “The attack — the third this week against polio workers in Pakistan — took place in the…

WFP Spokesperson Defends Agency’s Supply Of Food Aid To Syrian Opposition Areas

In a Google+ online discussion on Friday, World Food Programme (WFP) spokesperson Abeer Etefa “downplayed recent reports that not enough of [the agency’s] Syrian food aid is going to people in opposition areas,” GlobalPost reports. “The panel discussion comes as new figures from the United Nations show that the WFP has only been able to…

Humanitarian Groups Aim To Deliver Aid In Syria

News outlets report on the state of humanitarian aid in Syria, where conflict began nearly four years ago. Devex: Syrian breakthrough? Aid convoy expected in Homs “Following moderately successful diplomatic efforts in Switzerland over the weekend, the Syrian city of Homs is expected to receive on Monday its first convoy…

Warring Factions Must Compromise To Help Prevent Polio’s Spread

Washington Post: Polio is on the rise in war zones worldwide “In Syria, engulfed in civil war, slow and gradual progress is being made in efforts to vaccinate against polio after an outbreak last year, but there are still tens of thousands of children trapped in conflict zones who are…