Polio Vaccination Efforts In Sudan Have Stalled, U.N. Reports

John Ging, operations director of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, “told the U.N. Security Council on Monday that efforts to vaccinate 165,000 children against polio in Sudan’s violence-wracked South Kordofan and Blue Nile states have failed,” the Associated Press/Guardian reports (Lederer, 11/11). “The areas are under the control of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N), with which the Government of Sudan has been unable to resolve differences over the technical plans for the campaign,” according to the U.N. News Centre (11/11). Ging “said the two sides had agreed how the vaccination would be carried out, but the SPLM-N asked for a ‘final meeting’ and the government refused the talks,” Agence France-Presse notes (11/11). “Ging described the lack of access as sad and typical,” VOA News adds (11/11). “Ging, who briefed the U.N. Security Council on the situation on Monday, said if the United Nations were given the green light for the campaign, the world body could be on the ground the following day and able to vaccinate the 165,000 children in those two states in just four days,” Reuters writes (Nichols, 11/11).