PESHAWAR - Child Rights Movement (CRM) in collaboration with Save the Children expressed serious concern over the absence of breastfeeding law in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during the advocacy seminar conducted in Breastfeeding week 2014.

Dr Dost Muhammad, Director Sheikh Zaid Islamic Centre, University of Peshawar said that it is a basic right of an infant to be breastfeed by his or her mother for at least two years. He shared versus from the Holy Quran, Surah Baqra verses 233 "Mothers shall suckle their children for two whole years (that is) for those who wish to perfect the suckling".

He also said that breastfeeding also make a strong link of affection between a mother and her baby. He said that scientifically it has been proven that a breastfed baby immune system is far better than a bottle fed baby.

Dr Ambreen, Nutrition Officer UNICEF KP, was also part of this seminar and she shared "Role of Civil Society Organisations (CSO) in Protection and Promotion of Breastfeeding" with all the participants.

She enlightened the overall situation of breastfeeding in Pakistan and focused on the role of CSOs in protection and promotion of breastfeeding. She said that the World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is celebrated every year from August 1 to 7 in more than 170 countries to encourage breastfeeding and improve health of babies around the world. This year, she said, breastfeeding advocates in over 175 countries worldwide will be celebrating the WBW theme 'Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal - for Life," highlighting that achieving the Millennium Development Goals especially MDGs 4 and 5 requires more early, exclusive and continued breastfeeding.  Dr Parveen Azam of Dost Welfare Foundation shared health benefits of breastfeeding, saying the breastfed baby  have lesser chances of Asthma, childhood obesity, ear infection, Eczema (atopic dermatitis), Diarrhea and vomiting, low respiratory infections, necrotising enterocolitis, a disese that affects that affects the gastrointestinal tract in pre-term infants, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and Type 2 Diabetes.

She said that breastfeeding help mothers health and healing following childbirths and getting back to their pre-pregnancy weight more quickly. "Formula milk can be harder for a baby to digest," said Dr Parveen. She urged the civil society organisations, development partner for nutrition colleagues and media personnel from both the electronic and print media to raise voice for approval of Protection of Breastfeeding and Nutrition Ordinance 2014 by KP Cabinet.