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American people’s continued support for Pak water resources!

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JAMSHORO: USAID Deputy Mission Director for Sindh & Balochistan John Smith-Sreen and USAID Deputy Office Director Michael Hryshchyshyn called on VC Mehran University of Eng. and Technology  (MUET) Dr. Muhammad Aslam Uqaili.

During the meeting, they talked about ongoing Pak-US collaboration on effective and efficient water management, education, and research.  MUET students and faculty also participated in the discussions celebrating the partnership.

USAID provided $23.8 million to create the Center for Advanced Studies in Water (CAS-W) jointly implemented by MUET and the University of Utah in the United States.  CAS-W supports high-quality education and applied research on the water to prepare the next generation of experts and leaders to help Pakistan improve water resource management. 

The program offers graduate studies in irrigation, integrated water management, environmental engineering, and water sanitation.  Both universities are implementing a series of seminars and workshops to enhance awareness about critical water sustainability issues facing Pakistan.  USAID also funded the construction of an academic, laboratory, and research complex at MUET to house CAS-W.

CAS-W includes exchange programs hosted by the University of Utah.  During the campus visit, USAID officials interacted with MUET students who have completed their exchange program abroad.  They learned about their academic experience and impressions about life in the United States. 

Approximately, 250 students (33% of them women) have enrolled in CAS-W and 33 have graduated to date.  Over 100 students have completed exchange programs in the U.S.

Smith-Sreen emphasized that the U.S. government was proud to partner with Mehran University and the University of Utah on such an important issue:  “Water drives economic growth, is critical for good health, and represents a fundamental building block for Pakistan’s development,” he noted.

He further informed that the US had invested in multiple water-related activities in Sindh and Balochistan: “Our higher education collaboration between Mehran and Utah Universities is an important component of our overall water investments in Pakistan,” he concluded.     

 

 

 

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Pakistan

Suspicious package found near British parliament

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LONDON: Police on Wednesday carried out a controlled explosion on a suspicious package found in central London near the British parliament.
Officers were called to the gardens next to the River Thames during the afternoon and emergency services were at the scene, a police spokesman said.
An AFP photographer on the spot saw a bomb disposal robot being deployed in the area and a controlled explosion was heard.
A building where many MPs have their offices were also cordoned off along with Victoria Embankment which leads to parliament.
The area was targeted in a terror attack last year when Khalid Masood, mowed down and killed five pedestrians before fatally stabbing a police officer outside the parliament building.
A man who crashed his car into the security barriers outside parliament in August is also suspected of attempting an attack.

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Health

EOC notifies two more cases of polio

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ISLAMABAD: The National Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) for Polio Eradication has notified two new polio cases from Gadap, Karachi, and Khyber tribal district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

This brings the total number of polio cases in the country to six this year, however, the virus has failed to cause any clinical paralysis to both the children. The first case of polio was confirmed in a 42-month-old female child from Gadap, Karachi, and the other case in a 55-month old female child from Khyber tribal district, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The lab detected Poliovirus from their stool samples on October 1 and September 30 respectively. Fortunately, both the girls had received multiple doses of Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) which boosted their immunity and protected them from a life-long paralysis. “The polio virus has been continuously found in the sewage waters of Peshawar and Karachi for the last 12 months,” said Babar Bin Atta, the Prime Minister’s Focal Person for Polio Eradication.
“The programme will continue to focus on clearing these two remaining reservoirs from the virus with full force,” he remarked. “Multiple vaccine doses gave the children the immunity boost to fight off the polio virus attack. They have no residual weaknesses and will live like normal children,” said Dr. Rana Safdar, National Coordinator for Polio Eradication while appreciating the vigilant health workers who picked these cases with atypical clinical presentations.
“That is why it’s important for every under five-year-old child to be vaccinated in every round, so immunity levels are high enough to fight off the virus in its entirety,” he said.  Earlier this year, three polio cases were reported from Dukki District in Balochistan province, while one case was reported from the Charsadda district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP).
Being fully vaccinated in routine and door to door campaigns, the Charsadda child had also escaped paralysis. The wild poliovirus case numbers in Pakistan are the lowest ever and the immunity gaps continue to fall. However, despite this historic progress, Mr. Bin Atta said: “We cannot afford any let up in our efforts because as long as the virus is being detected anywhere in the country, no child is absolutely safe.” Multiple doses of polio vaccine are required for a child to be fully protected – each additional dose further strengthens a child’s immunity level against polio.
Contrarily, every missed child provides a place for the polio virus to hide. “Any child with low immunity will be where the virus will find refuge. We need to ensure all our children have received all of their routine immunizations and are vaccinated, with two drops, every time the vaccine is offered,” Mr. Bin Atta added. “Parents who do not ensure vaccination of their children are risking health and lives of their own children as well as others around them. It is thus the responsibility of communities to help to identify and vaccinating such children,” said Mr. Bin Atta. “We are closest ever to the goal of polio eradication. But to achieve it, we must all come together as a nation to ensure that every child is vaccinated. This is the only way we can collectively ensure that we rid polio from our land” he remarked.

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Pakistan

Asad Umer for probe on Wall Street Journal reports!

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Economic situation to be cleared

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Finance Asad Umer on Wednesday underlined the need for investigating the reports of ‘Wall Street Journal’.
National Accountability Bureau (NAB) was also an investigative institution which would conduct the inquiry regarding reports of Wall Street Journal, he stated while talking to Media. 
He said Wall Street Journal had mentioned about the matter of ‘Offshore companies’ scandals.  He made it clear that the PTI government would not accept any deal based on kick-backs. About Naveed Malik, he said we knew that he had close relations with Nawaz Sharif.  He added that the present government would make all-out efforts to streamline the system in PIA.  To a question, he said Tahir Mehmood was working as acting chairman in SECP.
To another question, he said PML-N had damaged the national economy.  He said the PTI government had levied taxes on wealthy people, while the poor were not imposed any new tax.  Commenting on currency rate, he said it was the prerogative of a state bank to formulate the policy regarding currency rate.

 

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