ISLAMABAD (APP) - Health experts have asked to launch awareness drive to motivate mothers for exclusive breast-feeding to their newborn babies instead of using formula milk. They were addressing a day-long national seminar on 'breast-feeding a key element to achieve Millennium Development Goals and save lives in emergencies organised here as part of Global Breast-feeding (BF) Week celebrations. They said formula milk is harmful for new-born babies, which should be avoided and demanded to stop formula milk manufacturing companies to approach health professionals for marketing purposes. They urged for early notification of rules and guidelines of 'Protection of breast-feeding and young child nutrition ordinance 2002. They said the ordinance was promulgated in 2002 however its guidelines and rules are yet to be approved. They said besides framing of the ordinance proper implementation and monitoring of the ordinance is also necessary. They said that World Breast-feeding Week will be a good opportunity to examine the status of the breast-feeding in Pakistan. They said there is a need of an integrated approach to infant and young child feeding strategy communication from pregnancy to early infancy. Addressing on the occasion, Director General Health Dr Abdul Rasheed Juma said that it is the core responsibility of health professionals to show commitment to address this serious issue. He said they can act as effective monitors for the promotion and protection of breast-feeding practices. Country Director UNICEF Martin Mogwanja said that children are among the most vulnerable groups during emergencies, and infants are the most vulnerable of all, due to increased risk of death caused by diarrhea and pneumonia. He said during emergencies, uncontrolled donations of breast-milk substitutes may undermine breast-feeding which should be avoided. Executive Coordinator The Network Dr Arif Azad said that last year with the support of UNICEF and Ministry of Health (Nutrition Wing), a National Alliance for Promotion and Protection of Breast-feeding (NAPBF) was formed with 21 NGOs aimed at creating mass awareness of the role of BF legislation and infant and child mortality. He said NAPBF is also working to advocate for BF legislation and monitoring mechanism for effective implementation. To achieve this, the alliance is demanding notification of rules and regulations of BF, paving the way for effective implementation of BF Ordinance 2002, he added.