Tuesday, 18 December 2012
Gunmen on motorbikes shot dead five female Pakistani polio vaccination workers on Tuesday, police said, highlighting resistance to the country's immunisation campaign.
Four were killed in three different incidents in the sprawling port city and the fifth in the northwestern city of Peshawar, on the second day of a nationwide three-day drive against the disease, which is endemic in Pakistan.
Sagheer Ahmed, the health minister for Sindh province, of which Karachi is capital, said he had ordered a halt to the anti-polio drive in the city in the wake of the shootings. Senior Karachi police officer Shahid Hayat said another polio worker was shot dead in the city on Monday, but the circumstances of his death only became clear on Tuesday.
In Peshawar, which lies close to the restive tribal areas, a haven for militants and hotspot for polio, two attackers on a motorbike fired on two sisters working on vaccination, killing one. The Taliban have banned immunisations in the northwest, condemning the campaign as a cover for espionage
Tuesday's killings in Karachi took place in parts of the city dominated by Pashtuns, Hayat said. Pashtuns are the dominant ethnic group in northwest Pakistan and have a sizeable migrant population in Karachi.
Posted on 12/18/2012 2:30 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
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