January 22, 2022

Beyond Going Long

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The Taliban attacked the polio vaccination team and shot the police

A police officer was killed in northwest Pakistan on Saturday and another was injured in an attack by two armed men on a motorbike, as they attacked the protection of a population vaccination team against polio.

The Pakistani branch of the Taliban, acting in the name of Tehrik Taliban Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack through its spokesman, Muhammad Chorasani.

This is the first attack by the militant group since the Pakistani Taliban announced on Friday the end of a month-long truce with the government. The peace of arms was announced in November as part of peace talks between the two sides.

Saturday’s attack on police officers who were guarding a vaccination team in Tank district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province took place during the second day of a five-day vaccination campaign aimed at vaccinating 6.5 million children in the province. Medical staff were not injured in the Taliban assassination.

The current vaccination campaign is part of a national program that aims to eradicate polio in Pakistan by the end of 2021.

Pakistan and neighboring Afghanistan are the only countries in the world where polio is naturally common in the population – a viral disease of the central nervous system. Until recently, Nigeria, West Africa, was one such country, but it declared its definitive victory over polio last year.

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