Pakistan: 6 anti-polio workers gunned down

Islamabad, Dec 19: At least five female and one male health worker, who were working for a UN-backed programme to immunise children from polio, an endemic disease in Pakistan, were killed by unidentified gunmen in different areas on Tuesday. While five of the victims, including four women, were killed in Landhi, Mokcho and Orangi areas of Karachi, another female health worker was gunned down in the suburbs of Peshawar.

Health Minister of Sindh province Saghir Ahmed has asked suspension of the anti-polio drive in the province following the attacks. The government intimated 24,000 workers engaged in the drive about its decision, he said.

Two female health workers were killed on the spot in Landhi area while the third worker was killed in Mokcho. Two more persons were attacked in Orangi. While the female worker died on the spot, her male colleague succumbed to his injuries in the hospital, sources in the polio team said. Reports said unidentified assailants targetted a polio vaccination team in Peshawar and a 14-year-old girl was injured. She died later.

No militant group has claimed responsibility for the attacks so far. However, the Pakistani Taliban had issued several warnings in the past against anti-polio drives.

OneIndia News

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