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Somali violence down, new push for child vaccines

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — Health officials in Somalia are rolling out a new five-in-one vaccine for children that they say will save thousands of lives.

Meanwhile, in Abu Dhabi Thursday, global health leaders unveiled a six-year plan to eradicate polio. Close to three-quarters of the plan’s projected $5.5 billion cost has already been pledged.

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, now a major player in global health efforts, said the larger goal in the fight against polio is to improve efforts to get life-saving vaccines to all children.

The deployment of the five-in-one vaccine in Somalia follows 20 years of conflict. Peace has increased in Somalia over the last year, and health care workers have access to more territory. But officials say they still expect trouble deploying vaccines to areas controlled by al-Shabab militants.

Associated Press


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