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War-torn Syria’s President seeks India’s help in reconstruction work of the country’s economy

Assad said as a growing power, India has a role to play in meeting the challenge of terrorism

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After aerial bombardment by the Syrian government of rebel-held areas of Azaz in Aleppo governorate. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

August 21, 2016: War-torn Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad has sought help from India in the reconstruction of his country’s economy.

Assad said this on Saturday during a meeting with visiting Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar in capital city Damascus.

 “Both leaders acknowledged that terrorism was a global problem,” an official source said here on Sunday.

“Assad said as a growing power, India has a role to play in meeting the challenge of terrorism,” the source said.

M. J. Akbar speaking at the Halifax International Security Forum 2014. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
M. J. Akbar speaking at the Halifax International Security Forum 2014. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

On his part, Akbar said the age of destruction should give way to reconstruction in Syria.

“Assad invited India to play an active role in the reconstruction of the Syrian economy,” the source said.

The Syrian President also welcomed India’s objective position on the conflict in Syria.

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There was an agreement between the two sides on further upgrading security consultations.

Akbar is on the second leg of his August 17-23 three-nation West Asia tour. He earlier visited Lebanon and met Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil.

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Akbar’s visit comes seven months after the visit of Syrian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem to India, during which he sought India’s economic and political support.

After Syria, Akbar will also visit the war-ridden country of Iraq. (IANS)

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Low Cure Rate For Childhood Cancer in India: Experts

On International Childhood Cancer Day, the hospital organised a ‘Sit and Draw competition’ with pediatric patients and rewarded the winner

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Health insurance covers only for hospitalization and doesn’t necessarily cover the medical expenses incurred for the treatment of major illnesses. flickr

Childhood cancer comprises almost 3-5 per cent of the total cancer cases in India, experts said here on Friday, expressing concern over the low cure rate due to lack of available data.

“The disturbing reality is that the cure rate of pediatric cancer is almost 80 per cent in the developed countries. When we see the data from major cancer centres, it actually can match up to the Western standard but this data is not enough,” Haemato-Oncologist Vivek Agarwala said at an awareness programme conducted by Narayana Superspecialty Hospital, Howrah.

According to the Indian Council for Medical Research, cancer in children constitutes approximately 3-5 per cent of the total cancer cases in India.

Agarwala said a large portion of the incidence of childhood cancer in society is still not addressed.

Cancer survivor. Flickr

Also, a large section who don’t have access to premier institutes are often diagnosed late due to financial crunch and that is why the overall treatment rate in India is low.

“Probably, the government and society at large are not considering it a big problem as it is just around 5 per cent. We are always campaigning for breast and cervical cancers,” Agarwala said.

“We must remember this 5 per cent of cancer is majorly curable if given proper treatment,” he said.

Leukaemia and retinoblastoma (a form of cancer where children have a white eye) are the two common forms of cancer in children.

Also Read- Push-ups Can Lower The Risk of Heart Diseases

Talking about awareness and symptoms that parents need to watch out for, he said: “Symptoms are different for different cancers, but children who have cancer have poor growth, poor weight gain and decreased appetite. One must get their children evaluated on seeing these symptoms”.

On International Childhood Cancer Day, the hospital organised a ‘Sit and Draw competition’ with pediatric patients and rewarded the winner. (IANS)