At least three members of polio vaccination team, all of them women, were shot dead by unknown assailants in Afghanistan’s eastern Nangarhar province on Tuesday, local officials said.
Attaullah Khogyani, the provincial administration’s spokesman, told Anadolu Agency the incident took place before noon in the provincial capital Jalalabad on the second day of a nationwide polio vaccination campaign for an estimated 9.2 million children below the age of 5.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but the province is marred by pro-Daesh as well as Taliban-led insurgency.
On Monday, The Health Ministry urged the Taliban to extend support and allow the vaccination in areas under their influence.
Globally, Afghanistan and Pakistan are the only two remaining polio endemic countries in the world, according to UNICEF.
According to UNICEF figures, 16 out of 34 provinces in Afghanistan have seen 56 cases of world polio virus type 1 (WPV1), and the virus’ circulation remains high in the southern region, which has contributed to 66% of the total national cases in 2020.