Increasing fear of polio in Syria’s Kurdish region



ARA News

Kobani, Aleppo, Syria

The Kurdish city of Kobani saw a vaccination campaign against the virus of polio which broke out recently in several areas in Syria, threatening thousands of children. Fears of the city’s residents have mounted recently as few cases were revealed in neighbouring areas. 

The Kurdish Health Centre of Kobani decided to launch a vaccination campaign in a try to minimize the possibility of the virus’s propagation among the city’s children. 

“The goal of the campaign is to increase the children’s immunity against polio. We are trying to eliminate a possible polio prevalence in the Kurdish region,” a member of staff in Kobani’s Kurdish Health Centre said in an interview with ARA News. “If the virus spreads in one area, it will most likely reach all cities and towns in the Kurdish region.” 

In the period between November 11-21, hundreds of children in Kobani received anti-polio vaccination. 

“Our children are exposed to the risk of different viruses caused by the ongoing war, but polio seems the most dangerous,” a mother who was holding her 6-year-old son in front of the vaccination centre told ARA News. “An entire generation is in danger, and the virus can easily spread from one city to another. Apparently, Kobani could be polio’s gate to the Kurdish region in Syria.”

Amid the international and regional concerns regarding the spread of different kinds of viruses among Syrian children due to the hard conditions experienced in the country, a number of international organizations began a large campaign to vaccinate more than 500,000 children in Syria against various viruses. 

This campaign is meant to include several areas across Syria; some rebel-held cities and towns, and other areas that are under the regime control. 

Vaccination campaigns started last week in areas of Hasakah province, north-eastern Syria, in several centres where local civil society NGOs cooperate with international organizations.  

The United Nation, on the other hand, launched a huge vaccination campaign against polio in the Middle-East after it broke out in Syria. Reportedly, more than 20 million children will receive vaccination in several countries. 


Reporting by: Baran Misko

Source: ARA News

(Editing by: Adib Abdulmajid. Translation by: Abdul Ilah Ibrahim)



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