PM condemns killing of polio workers in Quetta


Karachi, Jan 18 Unidentified gunmen today shot dead a mother and her daughter who were part of a polio vaccination team in Quetta, the capital of Pakistan's troubled Balochistan province.

Sakina Bibi, 38, and her daughter, Rizwana, 16, had been giving drops to children when two gunmen on a motorcycle opened fire, police said.

More than 2.4 million children were supposed to be administered the polio vaccine in the immunisation drive that was being conducted in Balochistan this week.

"Polio teams are rendering a huge national service to save our children from the crippling disease", his office said in a statement.

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Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi condemned the attack and has ordered an investigation. "Attack on these dedicated workers, risking their lives for their nation, is an attack on our future".

Pakistan is one of only two countries where new polio cases still surface, although the number of affected kids declined to eight in 2017 compared to 306 in 2014. It can lead to irreversible paralysis and death.

On January 9, at least seven people, including five Balochistan Constabulary personnel, were martyred, after a suicide bomber struck a security forces truck in Quetta, according to hospital and security officials.

Nobody took responsibility of the attack but the Taliban militants had been attacking polio teams.