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27 Children killed in chemical attack in Idlib province of Syria: UNICEF

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(Representational Image ) In this image made from video and posted online from Validated UGC, a Civil Defense worker carries a child after airstrikes hit Aleppo, Syria, April 28, 2016. VOA
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United Nations, April 6, 2017: At least 27 children were killed in the chemical attack in Idlib province of Syria, the UN Children’s Fund said here on Thursday.

A further 546 people, among them many children, have been injured, the UN agency said in a press release. “Casualty figures are expected to rise.”

“The killing of children in Syria cannot be allowed to continue,” said the Unicef Regional Director, Geert Cappelaere, demanding: “All parties to the conflict and those with influence on them must immediately put an end to this horror.”

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UNICEF and partners continue to respond to the attack by supporting three mobile clinics and four hospitals to provide first aid and treatment, and nine ambulances to refer and transport patients to hospitals in the area.

UNICEF is also delivering critical medical supplies and working with health partners to raise awareness about medical response to chemical attacks, the press release added.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday said he is deeply disturbed by reports of alleged use of chemical weapons in an airstrike in Idlib.

Media reports said about 70 persons were killed and 200 others were wounded Tuesday in a gas attack in a rebel-held area in southern Idlib.

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Also on Tuesday, a senior Syrian military officer denied reports of military toxic attack on rebel-held area in Idlib. The senior officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the rebels were the ones using the toxic gas against civilians to frame the Syrian army.

Earlier in the day, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said warplanes carried out intensive airstrikes on the rebel-held town of Khan Sheikhoun in the countryside of Idlib province, killing dozens of people, mostly civilians. (IANS)

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69,000 babies born on New Year’s day in India: Unicef

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69,000 babies born on New Year's day in India: Unicef
69,000 babies born on New Year's day in India: Unicef. wikimedia commons
United Nations, Jan 2, 2018: The United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) has estimated that nearly 386,000 babies were born on New Year’s Day, with India heading the list with 69,070.
More than 90 percent of the births took place in less developed regions, reports Xinhua news agency.
The Unicef reported that globally over half the births were estimated to have taken place in nine countries: India (69,070), China (44,760), Nigeria (20,210), Pakistan (14,910), Indonesia(13,370), the US (11,280), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (9,400), Ethiopia (9,020) and Bangladesh (8,370).
Among those children, some will unfortunately not make it past their first day.
In 2016, an estimated 2,600 children died within the first 24 hours every day of the year. Unicef said that for almost two million newborns, their first week was also their last.
In all, 2.6 million children died before the end of their first month. Among them, more than 80 percent died from preventable and treatable causes such as premature birth, complications during delivery and infections like sepsis and pneumonia.
Over the past two decades, the world has seen unprecedented progress in child survival, halving the number of children worldwide who die before their fifth birthday to 5.6 million in 2016.
But despite these advances, there has been slower progress for newborns. Babies dying in the first month account for 46 percent of all deaths among children under five.
Next month, Unicef will launch “Every Child Alive,” a global campaign to demand and deliver affordable, quality health care solutions for every mother and newborn.
These solutions include a steady supply of clean water and electricity at health facilities, presence of a skilled health attendant during birth, disinfecting the umbilical cord, breastfeeding within the first hour after birth and skin-to-skin contact between the mother and child. (IANS)

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