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Cases Of New Coronavirus Rises To 17, Number Of Deaths Is 11

“The deadly and mysterious coronavirus that first appeared in Saudi Arabia last year has claimed two more victims, bringing the official death toll to 11,” and the case count to 17, the Los Angeles Times’ “Booster Shots” blog reports. “The 17 patients identified so far are just the ‘tip of…

Humanitarian Response To Syrian Conflict ‘Half-Hearted At Best’

“The massacre in Syria rages on and yet we stand idle. We must realize that, to millions of Syrians trapped in the country, the virtual absence of humanitarian relief is nearly as arbitrary and cruel as the war itself,” Desmond Tutu, archbishop emeritus of Cape Town and a Nobel peace…

Pakistani Taliban Deny Responsibility For Attacks On Polio Workers

“The Pakistani Taliban on Friday denied any involvement in attacks on polio workers, which have killed 21 people since December, but confirmed it opposed the vaccination as ‘un-Islamic,’” Agence France-Presse reports. Ehsanullah Ehsan, a spokesperson for the umbrella group Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), told AFP, “We have no link with the attacks on…

Health Officials Continue To Monitor 2 New Respiratory Virus Outbreaks

“Two respiratory viruses in different parts of the world have captured the attention of global health officials — a novel coronavirus [NCoV] in the Middle East and a new bird flu spreading in China,” the Associated Press reports. The “WHO, which is closely monitoring the viruses, says both have the…

Opinion Piece Examines HIV in Middle East, North Africa

In this opinion piece in The Hill’s “Congress Blog,” international health consultant Taufiqur Rahman examines HIV/AIDS in the Middle East and North Africa. He discusses the many factors that contribute to the epidemic and the challenges of preventing and treating HIV in the region, as well as the role of…

Pakistan’s New Government Should Aim To Eradicate Polio

“When Pakistan’s new government is sworn in on Wednesday it has a historic opportunity” — “to eradicate polio from Pakistan, one of three countries where the crippling disease remains endemic,” Sania Nishtar, a federal minister in the government of Pakistan, writes in the Wall Street Journal’s “India Real Time” blog.…

Polio Virus Found In Sewage Sample From Israel

“The polio virus has been found in a sewage sample from Israel for the first time since 2002, the [WHO] announced on Monday,” the New York Times reports, noting no new cases have been identified in Israel or in Gaza or the West Bank. “The sample was from Rahat, a…

Financial Times Magazine Examines Pakistan’s Polio Fight

The Financial Times Magazine features a story examining the challenges volunteer polio workers face in vaccinating children in Pakistan. The article details the murder of several polio workers in December 2012, the operation of vaccination teams and their security details, and rumors surrounding the polio vaccine that have caused some…