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Turkey launches polio vaccination campaign in Syria

The Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) has launched a polio vaccination campaign in Syria in collaboration with the International Federation of Physicians (AID) and the Turkish Waqf Youth.


Hundreds of thousands of Syrian children are thought to be at risk of contracting the illness after the disease re-emerged in the country for the first time since 1999 following the civil war. It is believed to have already claimed more 150,000 lives.

The polio virus, which lives in contaminated food and water, has been found in the Syrian province of Deir Al-Zour, one of the least developed regions in Syria.

Experts warn that if preventive measures to stop the contagious virus are not taken it could spread across the country.

The three Turkish organisations launched a vaccination campaign to reduce the risk of infection along with other activities including an awareness seminar to be held in Istanbul on April 26.

Anadolu news agency Arabic News Editor Turan Kislakci is scheduled to speak at the event along with writer Hamza Turkmen and journalist Abdurrahman Dilipak.

The organisations are also planning a photo exhibition to reflect the human tragedy in Syria.

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