U.N. Confirms an Outbreak of Polio in Syria

Source: New York Times

By: Cumming-Bruce, Nick


An outbreak of polio among children in Syria has been confirmed by the United Nations (UN), with tests confirming polio in at least 10 children in Deir al-Zour Province. UN officials plan to launch a campaign to vaccinate 2.4 million children in the country against polio and other diseases, and as refugees flee to neighboring countries due to the civil war, vaccination efforts are being beefed up in Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Turkey, Egypt, and Israel as well. Prior to the outbreak of war, 95 percent of Syria’s population had been immunized. Health officials are working to identify the source of the disease, which is believed to have originated with jihadi fighters from Pakistan, where polio is still endemic.

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