World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkey's Health Minister Ahmet Demircan on Thursday highlighted the importance of vaccination for children to protect them from diseases.
Speaking at Anadolu Agency Editors' Desk, Demircan requested parents refusing vaccinations due to concerns that they have high levels of aluminium to reconsider their decision.
"The vaccines contain aluminium but within the limitation set by the World Health Organization (WHO)," he said.
"We are monitoring side effects of the vaccines along with WHO," he added.
The minister said a person who had been administered all of their vaccines carried 4.25 milligrams of aluminium on an average -- the same amount which can be found in drinking water and stomachache pills.
Demircan also warned families against refusing the polio vaccine. "An unvaccinated child poses threat not only to himself or herself but to the entire community."
He said Turkey had not reported a polio case in 19 years.
"It is exceptional," Demircan said. "Turkey is one of the leading countries to implement polio vaccination as a health policy."
Demircan said Turkey had reported only one diphtheria case since 2004.
"Only one person died because of diphtheria and he was not vaccinated," the minister said. "In 2016, 22 people died because of refusing to get tetanus shots. They all rejected it."
Demircan said the government was also closely monitoring the mosquito-borne Zika virus. Although its symptoms are relatively mild, health officials are alarmed by the disease because it is linked to devastating birth defects.
Number of security staff are accused of political spying in 2014 when Recep Tayyip Erdogan was prime minister
After parliament decides on election bill, it will be published in official gazette without being approved by president
Turkish deputy prime minister says plans for early elections avert uncertainty
Soldier killed when explosive device went off during security search in Afrin
Nearly 10,000 Syrians have returned home in 2018 through Cilvegozu border gate in southern Hatay province
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Xi Jinping exchange views on latest developments in war-torn country
'The campaign process will likely start around May 15,' ruling AK Party spokesman Mahir Unal says
New gate along Turkish-Syrian border is set to open near Jinderes in southwestern Afrin, Syria
Accident involving van carrying 135 undocumented migrants in eastern Erzurum province kills 2, severely injures 4 others
FETO members have been convicted of attempting to violate constitutional order on night of defeated coup in July 2016
Suspects allegedly channeling funds to terror group, spreading online terror propaganda
'Our presidential candidate is Recep Tayyip Erdogan,' opposition MHP leader Devlet Bahceli announces on Twitter
Deputy Premier Bekir Bozdag says Turkey to open 'new period' through planned early elections on June 24
Two university students from each of the 81 provinces in Turkey set to attend