The ongoing saga of vaccinating the population against polio in Pakistan. No good news.
Gunmen riding on a motorcycle shot and killed a police officer protecting polio workers during a U.N.-backed vaccination campaign in northwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, the police said.
The attack took place as dozens of polio workers — including several women — were going door to door to vaccinate children in Gullu Dheri village of Swabi district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, said senior police officer Izhar Shah. None of the polio workers the police officer was protecting were hurt in the attack, he said.
Some Islamic militants oppose the vaccination campaign, accuse health workers of acting as spies for the U.S. and claim the polio vaccine is intended to make Muslim children sterile. Pakistan is one of the few remaining places where polio is still rampant.
The attacks occurred on the second day of a three-day campaign against polio that was launched by the provincial government. No one claimed responsibility for the shooting in Gullu Dheri, but suspicion fell on militants.
Here is how this evolved.