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Taliban Alleged To Have Stopped Annual Polio Vaccination Program In Rural Afghanistan

“The Taliban have halted an annual polio vaccination campaign in a remote part of Afghanistan, according to a senior official, raising concerns that opposition to the critical immunization drive could be spilling across from insurgent groups in neighboring Pakistan,” the Guardian reports. Tamim Nuristani, governor of the remote Nuristan province, said…

WHO Reports 9th Death From New SARS-Like Virus

“A Saudi man infected with a deadly new virus from the same family as SARS has died, becoming the ninth patient in the world to be killed by the disease which has so far infected 15, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday,” Reuters reports. “The 39-year-old developed symptoms of the novel…

International Community Urged To Disburse Pledged Funds To Help Yemen

“The international community has been urged to follow Saudi Arabia’s example by releasing funds pledged to help Yemen address its growing humanitarian crisis and economic, social and security challenges,” the Guardian reports. “Donors pledged more than $7.5 billion to Yemen last year, with Saudi Arabia’s $3 billion commitment the largest by a distance,” the…

U.N. Warns Humanitarian Needs Growing In Syria; 2.5M People Need Emergency Food Aid

“The United Nations food relief agency [on Tuesday] warned that humanitarian needs in Syria — especially for food — are growing, with serious bread and fuel shortages across the war-torn country,” the U.N. News Centre reports (1/8). “The U.N. World Food Programme (WFP) said nearly 2.5 million people — most of them…

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…