UN, NGO and General News Round-UP

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation pledged USD 255 million to fight polio, the potential killer that still cripples children in parts of Africa and Asia. The pledge was part of a USD 630 million package, including funds from the British and German governments, according to a statement released today by the Seattle-based Gates Foundation. The money will go to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, whose partners include Rotary International, a service organization based in Evanston, Illinois. The foundation earlier said it aims to prevent the onset of new polio cases globally by 2010 and to ensure the eradication of the virus three years later, but the foundation no longer is holding to that timetable, an outside spokeswoman told Bloomberg news.

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