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Indonesia Begins Polio Eradication Campaign

Child receives mouth drop of polio vaccine in Cikaso Tengah village, near town of Sukabumi, West Java

The Indonesian government has begun a polio eradication campaign, with plans to vaccinate six-point-four million children over the next two days.

Sixteen people have been affected in the current outbreak.

Officials say they are targeting children who live in Jakarta and western Java to blunt the first outbreak of polio in Indonesia in a decade.

The World Health Organization will assist Indonesian health officials.

Indonesia is the 16th country where polio has reappeared since 2003, and the first outside Africa and the Middle East. Polio is a viral disease that usually affects children, often causing permanent paralysis and muscular atrophy.

Health officials suspect that Indonesia's outbreak can likely be traced back to Nigeria, where polio vaccinations were suspended for several months in 2003.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.