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Three polio workers killed in Kunar

AT-KABUL: At least three men working on a polio vaccination campaign were kidnapped and killed by unknown gunmen in eastern Kunar province, police chief said on Sunday.

Chief of the Kunar police, Abdul Habib Syedkhel, said the polio workers were abducted from Ghaziabad district by unidentified armed men nearly two weeks ago. The vaccinators were killed last night. Their dead bodies were recovered from the Abargul area of Ghaziabad district.

However, the acting director of the provincial health department, Dr Ihsanullah Fazli, confirmed the kidnapping of two polio workers. He identified the vaccinators as Abdul Khaliq and Hazirullah.

Dr Ihsanullah Fazli said that the vaccinators were kidnapped 12 days ago from the Ailgal clinic of Ghaziabad. No group has claimed responsibility for the abduction and killing of the health workers.

Due to attacks on polio teams, the vaccination drives in the country’s eastern and southern parts have almost failed. In Nangarhar over 30,000 children were left unvaccinated.

Last year 20 positive polio cases were reported in Afghanistan. All of the cases were reported in insecure provinces. Eight cases were documented in Nangarhar and two in Kunar. Attacks on polio teams in Afghanistan are less than Pakistan. The two neighboring countries have yet to get rid of the polio virus. The two countries transfer the virus to each other.

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