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WHO Says Afghan Polio Cases Linked To Pakistan

An Afghan health worker marks a door in Kabul to denote that it's been visited by a polio-eradication team on the last day of a vaccination campaign in February.
The World Health Organization (WHO) says new polio cases in eastern Afghanistan are related to cross-border transmission from neighboring Pakistan.

Oliver Rosenbauer, a representative of WHO's Global Polio Eradication Initiative, told RFE/RL on March 31 that although "tremendous progress has been achieved in Afghanistan," the country will remain at risk of infection as long as the polio virus circulates in neighboring Pakistan.

Last week, the UN organization declared that polio had been eradicated from Southeastern Asia.

But the crippling virus remains endemic in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria.

There also have been outbreaks in conflict-hit countries like Syria.

The Taliban has opposed vaccination efforts in many areas of Pakistan and eastern Afghanistan that are under the militant movement's control.