Pakistan may face international travel ban following measles outbreak

Islamabad, May 16 : Pakistan may face an international travel ban, including a possible ban on Hajj travel by Saudi Arabia, due to its failure to control a measles outbreak.

Dr Sania Nishtar, Minister for Information and Technology, Education and Trainings and Science and Technology, said that this was the second time a measles outbreak could not be prevented in Pakistan, and this, she warned, could lead to international isolation and a potential travel ban, reports The Express Tribune.

According to a report last month, there have already been 25,401 reported cases of measles less than four months into this year. At least 146 children across the country have lost their lives due to the disease.

According to official documents, out of 7,000-plus laboratory confirmed measles cases in 2012, a staggering 60 percent of children were not given even a single dose of the measles vaccine, while 20 percent were inoculated with only one dose.

World Health Organisation's (WHO) focal person on the measles outbreak in Pakistan, Dr Qamarul Hasan said Pakistan is one of the top five countries in the world having the highest number of unvaccinated children.

--ANI (Posted on 16-05-2013)

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