Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

Recent attacks on medical aid workers in Pakistan

Delivered in Plenary - 7th February 2013

Mr President

The case of medical workers being brutally murdered in Pakistan simply for trying to protect children from a crippling disease polio exposes the moral bankruptcy at the heart of the Taliban. In their quest to subjugate women and spread lies about vaccinations making Muslim children infertile, they have not only further poisoned the political outlook in Pakistan, but potentially put a generation of children at risk of disease for the sake of their vicious and distorted dogma.

Anything that appears to threaten their power or their distorted world view must, in their eyes, be eliminated. As usual, it is the poorest and most vulnerable members of society who suffer the consequences. Pakistan is one of the very few countries in which polio remains endemic. If children in Europe no longer need to endure this dreadful illness, Pakistani children should not have to either.

We must therefore do all we can in the European Union to assist Pakistani civil society in its worthy aims and to prevent the wretched Taliban claiming any more lives in their pursuit of a toxic doctrine.