UN childrens agency lauds Bangladeshs vow to ending preventable child deaths before

“There’s a lot to learn from Bangladesh. Between 1991 and 2011, under-five deaths fell by almost 75 per cent, thanks, in part, to its commitment to innovation and knowledge-sharing,” said UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director Anthony Lake.“The challenge now is to achieve high levels of coverage of existing and new interventions, such as vaccinations and skilled birth attendants, by targeting the poorest populations where infant and child mortality remain high,” Mr. Lake added.About 60 per cent of child deaths in Bangladesh happen during the first 28 days of birth, mostly due to birth asphyxia, neonatal infections, prematurity and complications at birth, according to the Government of Bangladesh and UNICEF.Taking effective steps to counter neonatal deaths is a “challenge”, UNICEF has said, as 71 per cent of deliveries in the country still take place at home.In addition, the main reasons for deaths of children under the age of five are pneumonia, drowning and diarrhoea. Malnutrition is also a threat, with 41 per cent of children in the same age group experiencing stunted growth.Despite these obstacles, the Government has pledged to scale up “simple and cost-effective” interventions involving a broad range of stakeholders and to regularly monitor progress.Among its plans, the Government has committed to scaling-up nutrition packages for women, infants and young children. Bangladesh is one of 24 countries that have stepped up efforts to bring down neonatal and child mortality to 20 per 1,000 live births in line with UNICEF’s global initiative known as ‘Commitment to child survival: a promise renewed’.These efforts also move the country further in achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDG) 4 and 5 on reducing child mortality and improving maternal health by 2015. read more

Over 100 dead in Brazil state amid anarchy spurred by police

By Paulo Whitaker | VITORIA, Brazil Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedBrazil police banned from striking by Supreme CourtApril 6, 2017In “Regional”Colombia landslides: Over 200 die in Putumayo floodsApril 1, 2017In “Regional”Brazilian military rule torturer Paulo Malhaes found deadApril 26, 2014In “Regional” Army soldiers patrol the streets of Vila Velha, Espirito Santo, Brazil February 9, 2017. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker(Reuters) More than 100 people have been reported killed, with schools and businesses closed and public transportation at a standstill, as a six-day strike by police in the Brazilian state of Espirito Santo showed no signs of abating on Thursday.Chaos and anarchy spurred by the strike continued in the coastal state to the north of Rio de Janeiro, despite the deployment of 1,200 army soldiers and federal police and the promise that more help was on its way.Most of the violence was centered in the state capital Vitoria, a wealthy port city ringed by golden beaches, where mining and petroleum industries have a strong base.State officials said they needed hundreds more federal troops and members of an elite federal police force to help establish order and make up for the 1,800 state police who normally patrol Vitoria’s metropolitan area.The state government has not released an official number for killings since police went on strike on Saturday for better pay, but a spokeswoman for the union representing police told Reuters early on Thursday it had registered 101 homicides since Saturday.That would be more than six times the state’s average daily homicide rate compared to last year’s data.The Globo TV network, citing security officials, reported that 200 cars were stolen in Vitoria on a single day, when the state average is 20.The state’s retailers association said that businesses have lost 90 million reais ($28.87 million) since police walked out on the job.The strike has been assisted by family and friends of officers who have blocked access to barracks and police stations. It comes as Espirito Santo, like many states wracked by Brazil’s worst recession on record, struggles to ensure even basic health, education and security services.Representatives of the striking police, including some of the officers’ wives, met with state officials Wednesday night to demand that salaries be doubled for every category of officer. The union said they have not received a raise in four years.The base monthly pay for an officer is 2,643 reais ($847.96), according to Corporal Thiago Bicalho, a spokesman for striking police.“We are going to analyze the offer and see what we can do in reality to advance this situation,” said Julio Pompeu, director of the state’s human rights secretariat, who is helping the government negotiate with police.The two sides are scheduled to meet again later Thursday.($1 = 3.1171 reais)(Reporting by Paulo Whitaker and Brad Brooks; Editing by Daniel Flynn and Bernadette Baum) read more