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Pakistan to require polio vaccines for all exit travelers

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Pakistani children wait their turns to receive polio vaccines in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Tuesday, May 6, 2014. Pakistans health minister says the country is taking extra ordinary measures to meet the new situation it is going to face after polio travel restrictions. (AP Photo/B.K. Bangash) (AP2014)

Pakistan will require all travelers leaving the country to obtain a polio vaccination from June 1, 2014, the health ministry said Tuesday.

A statement from the ministry said the restrictions comply with a decision by the World Health Organization advising travelers of all ages to be vaccinated by next month.

It says all provinces have been provided necessary guidance and material to set up special counters at hospitals and airports for polio vaccination and certification.

The ministry spokesman Sajid Shah says pregnant women traveling abroad are not exempted from the restrictions and the vaccination is not injurious for them.

The WHO has declared the spread of polio an international public health emergency and identified Pakistan, Syria and Cameroon as having allowed the virus to spread beyond their borders.