Kincora consolidates Mongolian copper province

Kincora Copper has moved to consolidate the southern Gobi copper belt in conjunction with a company ultimately controlled by Robert Friedland

If Sam Spring’s comparison of south eastern Mongolia now to Chile in the 1970s holds any water at all, then Kincora Copper’s (CVE:KCC) latest deal could position it as a significant player in the world’s next major copper province.
As chief executive of Kincora and a former AMA Mining Analyst of the Year, Spring brings considerable geological expertise to the table, as well as time spent in the broking community getting to know the whys and wherefores of capital markets.
For a couple of years now, he’s weathered the downturn in mining, conserving cash for Kincora while making sure that licenses are retained, and in some case regained.
Now though, as signs of life start to breathe through the Canadian equity markets, Kincora has staked its claim as a major player in Mongolia by adding to its existing Tourmaline and Bronze Fox licenses a whole swathe of ground held by Ibex, a private vehicle ultimately controlled by the famous mining entrepreneur Robert Friedland.
Seasoned investors will remember that it was Friedland himself who really opened up Mongolia, with the development of what is now one of the world’s largest copper mines at Oyu Tolgoi.
Back then, Friedland’s vehicle was called Ivanhoe, and it made a lot of people a lot of money before eventually selling out to a company commensurate with the size of Oyu Tolgoi, Rio Tinto(LON:RIO).
But the knowledge and skill sets that Friedland and his people gained during that exercise were not to go to waste.
Friedland kept his hand in, and Ibex managed to secure a significant land position north east of Oyu Tolgoi along the trend of the Oyu Tolgoi Tsagaan Suvarga Devonian belt.
It’s this that’s now coming into Kincora via a merger of local subsidiaries and the issue of nearly 59 mln Kincora shares with additional warrants to Ibex’s owner HPX, a private vehicle.
HPX will in turn bring some of the latest exploration technology to bear on the ground in Mongolia.
You can almost hear the excitement in Spring’s voice when he says: “Ibex’s portfolio was secured and targets advanced by former key executives of Oyu Tolgoi’s exploration team and focused on ‘mega scale’ gold-rich coppery porphyry targets.”
In other words, the idea is to turn south-eastern Mongolia now into what Chile was in the 1970s – the next big copper development region.
There, porphyry mines like Oyu Tolgoi almost always occur in clusters. And on a comparative basis, the small corner of Mongolia that contains Oyu Tolgoi and Kincora’s now much-expanded land position would, in Chile, contain 15 large copper mines and be producing more than two million tonnes of copper per year.


Lake Baikal may disappear like Aral Sea because of Mongolia and China

Source: Pravda.Ru photo archive
Lake Baikal may repeat the fate of the Aral Sea. An environmental threat is looming over the largest fresh water lake which is also the deepest water reservoir in the world. Problems for Russia's iconic lake may arise because of Mongolia's plans to build three hydropower plants on the Selenga River.

To save the lake, the construction must be canceled. In order to do that, one needs to offer something else to Mongolia. Currently, Mongolia is dissatisfied with conditions of electric power supplies from Russia.

Noteworthy, a Chinese bank has already allocated $827 million for the construction of the new hydroelectric power stations on Baikal Lake.

Moscow intends to create an alternative to the construction of hydropower plants and already looks for other opportunities to supply electricity to Mongolia. The first round of negotiations on the subject was held on April 11 in Russia.



Mongolia’s New Power Plants May Suck Dry Lake Baikal in Siberia

According to media reports, Mongolia’s plans to build three large power plants on the river that feeds Russia’s Lake Baikal may result in a drop in water levels at the unique lake in southeastern Siberia.

MOSCOW (Sputnik)  Mongolia’s plans to build three large power plants on the river that feeds Russia’s Lake Baikal may result in a drop in water levels at the unique lake in southeastern Siberia, Russian media reported Tuesday, citing government sources.
Three Mongolian hydropower plants are due to be constructed on the Selenga River and its tributaries, which supply Lake Baikal with 80 percent of its water.
According to the Izvestia newspaper, Russian government officials are concerned about the potentially irreversible adverse effects the plants could have on the ecology of Lake Baikal.
Mongolia decided to build the power plants as it was unable to agree on energy prices that it found satisfactory with Russia, its main supplier. According to the paper, the Russian government is now actively searching for alternative ways to meet Mongolia’s energy needs.

Source:Sputnik, Russian news agency

Multinational Peacekeeping Exercise Khaan Quest 2016 commences with opening ceremony

      Story by Cpl. Janessa Pon
Multinational Peacekeeping Exercise Khaan Quest 2016 commences with opening ceremonyCpl. Janessa Pon
Members of the Mongolian Armed Forces stand in formation before the Khaan Quest 2016 opening ceremonies May 22 at Five Hills Training Area, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Khaan Quest 2016 is an annual multinational peacekeeping operations exercise conducted in Mongolia and is the capstone exercise for the Global Peace Operations Initiative. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Cpl. Janessa K. Pon)

This year’s Khaan Quest, held annually in Mongolia, is serving as the capstone exercise for the United Nations Global Peace Operations Initiative program, which provides pre-deployment training to GPOI partner countries preparing to support UN Peacekeeping Missions and is scheduled to take place May 22-June 4.

The ceremony was attended by the president of Mongolia, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj, the U.S. Ambassador to Mongolia, Jennifer Zimdahl Galt, and the U.S. PACOM commander, Admiral Harry Harris Jr.

“(Participants) have come from near and far to our beautiful country bound by a single cause of world peace,” said Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj.
“Today, Khaan Quest is universally recognized as one of the most prestigious regional events with ever-increasing reputation, significance and participation.”

The needs of people worldwide serve as a constant reminder to us of the necessity of peaceful resolution of disputes and global service, which is the driving force behind these peacekeeping operations, according to Elbegdorj.

After Elbegdorj’s opening remarks, Harris addressed the audience, detailing the importance of multinational relationships and training.

“This year’s training will take us to the next level,” said Harris. “The Five Hills Training Facility will be home to militaries from around the world – about 2,000 soldiers from more than 40 countries. This facility will provide them with a specialized setting to learn and train together and will work to enhance interoperability and develop common tactics. All of this will ultimately enhance our collective effectiveness to support global peacekeeping operations.”

After the opening remarks, platoons from participating countries marched past the reviewing stand and flags flown to signify patriotism and the developing relationship between participating countries.

“In 2003, Khaan Quest began as a joint training endeavor between Mongolia and the U.S.,” said Harris. “Now, it’s a premier peacekeeping exercise involving dozens of nations from around the world. This is a testament to the power of partnership.”

The exercise will consist of four main events: Command Post Exercise (CPX), Field Training Event (FTE), Engineering Civic Action Program (ENCAP) projects, Health Services Support Engagement (HSSE) as well as training on critical enabler capabilities such as unmanned aerial systems, explosive ordnance disposal and counter-improvised explosive device (C-IED). USPACOM is the Organization Coordinating Event (OCE) for the exercise and provides command and control for all KQ 16 activities.

The field training exercise aims to hone service members’ skills in peacekeeping operational procedures through training in weapons familiarization, small boat operations, survival training and a multinational platoon competition.

The command post exercise aims to support Mongolian modernization goals by establishing and globally deploying battalion assets during peacekeeping operations by utilizing scenario-based exercises.

“The need for teamwork is proven again and again, the most recent examples being the tragic earthquakes in Japan and Ecuador,” said Harris. “It reminds us that all nations, no matter how rich or powerful, can use the help of our global community from time to time. And the best time to develop these partnerships is before world events demand them. Harnessing the wealth of capabilities represented by the many militaries here today is a priority. It’s a necessity to successfully address the range of transnational threats present in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.”

The ceremony closed with a final march past the reviewing stands followed by group photos with the guests of honor in the center of the parade deck.

“The U.S. is committed to the Indo-Asia-Pacific and we work diligently with Mongolia and other like-minded partners to build PKO capacity throughout the region,” said Harris. “Mongolia is a model PKO partner, not just with the U.S., but also with NATO and has supported many multinational operations around the world.”

For more information about Khaan Quest, please visit the official Facebook page at For more information about the GPOI program visit the U.S. State Department’s website –
      Story by Cpl. Janessa Pon

Mongolia's new election rules handicap smaller parties, clear way for two-horse race

A woman casts her vote at a polling station during Mongolia's presidential elections in Bayanchandmani, north east of Ulan Bator June 26, 2013. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo
ULAANBAATAR: Democratic values that flourished in Mongolia in the quarter century since communism crumbled have been eroded, according to small parties that have been marginalized by changes to election rules ahead of next month's parliamentary poll.
With just three million people, this remote land, best known as the birthplace of the Mongol emperor Genghis Khan, has stood as an oasis of democracy, surrounded by single-party dominated regimes - including giant neighbours Russia and China.
Mongolia's political transformation since a peaceful revolution in 1990 has been a big plus for foreign investors eyeing up its rich mineral resources.
But an abrupt economic slowdown since 2012 has stirred controversy over the role played by international mining firms like Rio Tinto, which this month finally approved a US$5.3 billion Oyu Tolgoi copper mine extension plan, having settled a long dispute with the government a year ago.
The mining slump was still likely to cost ruling Democratic Party seats at the June 29 election, according to opinion polls.
Whether the opposition Mongolian People's Party (MPP) can take advantage is unclear, but following a recent fundamental change to the character of Mongolia's democracy, the election has become much more of a two-horse race.
On May 5, parliament amended the election law to remove a clause first introduced in 2012 that allocated 28 of the 76 seats in the legislature, known as the Grand Khural, according to parties' shares of the vote.
"Unfortunately, the recent decision to go back to the majoritarian system is a regress and will again force many parties into two political blocs," said Oyun Sanjaasuren, a lawmaker from the Civil Will-Green Party, a junior partner in the ruling coalition.
A panel of judges said all lawmakers should be directly elected by voters, rather than selected from party lists.
The decision will also mean some 150,000 Mongolians living abroad won't be able to vote as they are not registered with a constituency.
Advocates of democracy were dismayed by the late rule changes.
"It's considered bad practice everywhere to change the law so close to the race," Dagva Enkhtsetseg, the Open Society Forum's programme manager for elections and political financing, told Reuters.
The complete switch to a 'first past the post' system - similar to British democracy - virtually reduces the poll to a two horse race.
The Democratic Party, which emerged out of the revolution, will slug it out against the MPP which had held sway during earlier decades of Soviet hegemony, and later reinvented itself as a social-democrat party and either led or was partner in coalitions between 2002 to 2012.
Two days prior to the election law amendment, the government-appointed General Election Commission, barred two smaller parties - including the Civil Will-Green Party - from contesting due to election paper irregularities.
Another 12 small parties were given the all clear, including the Respect the People Party, the "Khan Choice" Coalition, and the Conservative Party, but they are not expected to score well under a 'first past the post' system.
The Civil Will-Green Party is seeking reinstatement in the ballot, but Surenkhuu Borgil, leader or the newly-formed National Labor party (HUN), which was also barred from contesting, intends to run as an independent.
He fears controversies arising from the law changes could spark discontent, as seen during the 2008 election when rumours of vote rigging sparked riots in the capital, Ulaanbaatar.
"Changing the election law is not improving the election process, but cheating democracy," he said. "This could trigger a messy election."
A weak economy and lack of jobs has reduced confidence in politicians and widened social divisions in a nation where nearly a third of the people still live nomadic or semi-nomadic lives.
An International Republican Institute (IRI) survey found 57 percent of Mongolians believed parliament was ineffective and 67 percent disapproved of Prime Minister Chimed Saikhanbileg.
Economic growth is projected at 0.1 percent this year, far away from the all-time high of 17.5 percent in 2011. Falling coal and copper prices, and weak demand from China, Mongolia's biggest trading partner, have made for hard times.
"Everything is bad, it's pretty bad," Delgermaa, a 56-year-old stall holder, said while selling candies in the capital's Chinggis Square. She hadn't decided who to vote for.
(Editing by David Stanway and Simon Cameron-Moore)

Air Astana Alleges Breach of Chicago Convention by Mongolia

Kazakhstan’s Air Astana has had to cancel the planned launch of direct flights between Astana and Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia from June 2 due to what it called the ungrounded revocation of permission by the Civil Aviation Authority of Mongolia (CAAM).
Kazakhstan and Mongolia signed an air services agreement in 1992 and a memorandum of understanding establishing the number of flights allowed in 2014. According to Air Astana, the CAAM granted authorization to start flights this March, but in April it withdrew its permission. The airline said it started the flight permission application process—a procedure that normally takes two months to complete—eight months before the planned first flight. It passed an audit by Mongolian authorities, who later reported “zero findings.”
Despite diplomatic efforts by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Industry and Development of Kazakhstan, the CAA refuses to reverse its revocation due to what Air Astana characterized as an ungrounded and changing list of reasons, including the aforementioned audit, the lack of availability of Ulaanbaatar Airport in June for the July ASEM Summit and an alleged blacklisting by ICAO. Air Astana does not appear on any blacklist, however.
Kazakhstan believes that Mongolia is in breach of the provisions of the Chicago Convention, and will refer the matter to the ICAO Council accordingly,” said Air Astana in a statement.


Korea, Mongolia agree to seek increase in flights, bolster development cooperation

President Park Geun-hye (R) shakes hands with her Mongolian counterpart, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj (L), before their talks at the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae on May 19, 2016. (Yonhap)
President Park Geun-hye (R) shakes hands with her Mongolian counterpart, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj (L), before their talks at the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae on May 19, 2016. (Yonhap)

The leaders of Korea and Mongolia agreed Thursday to seek an increase in flights between the two nations and expand cooperation in the latter's infrastructure construction and overall economic development.
President Park Geun-hye and her Mongolian counterpart, Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj, signed three memorandums of understanding (MOUs) on strengthening bilateral economic cooperation and another on cooperation in the sports sector.
One of the MOUs concerns joint efforts to "actively" discuss ways to increase the number of flights between the two nations. 
Currently, there are 12 weekly passenger flights between Korea's western port city of Incheon and the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar despite a recent increase in the number of passengers. 
Last year, some 190,000 people traveled between the two cities.
Since 2013, there has been no increase in flights between the two nations due mainly to opposition from Mongolia fearing a potentially negative impact on its airline's competitiveness. 
Under another MOU, the two sides will seek to bolster cooperation in Mongolia's urban development project. The MOU will help South Korea export its "smart city" model to the Central Asian state, Seoul officials explained.
The two countries also signed an MOU to enhance cooperation in the quarantine process for Mongolia's livestock products. Korea has been struggling to cope with illicit livestock imports from Mongolia, which could pose health risks here.
To expand Korea's support for Mongolia's development projects, the two sides, moreover, inked an MOU to enhance cooperation in various areas, including energy, education, urban development, environment and public administration reform. (Yonhap)

Canadian junior miner Khan Announces Completion of Documentation for Settlement Payment

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - May 18, 2016) - Khan Resources Inc. ("Khan" or the "Company") (CSE:KRI) announces that Khan and the Government of Mongolia have signed the settlement documentation required for the release of US$70 million to Khan from the escrow agent located in New York. With the execution of such agreement, joint instructions will be issued to the escrow agent to transmit the funds to Khan, and Khan's counsel will secure a dismissal order from the United States District Court in Washington, DC of Khan's petition for certification of the international arbitration award rendered on March 2, 2015 in favour of Khan.
The Company is continuing to investigate and detail options to distribute the majority of the funds remaining, after discharge of liabilities and obligations, to shareholders in a tax-efficient and timely manner. The process may entail multiple tranches.
With the forthcoming transmittal of the settlement to Khan, the Company's primary objectives have now been met, and Martin Quick and Raffi Babikian have announced their retirement from the Board. The Company wishes to thank Messrs. Quick and Babikian for their valued input and years of service through very trying times.

Source: Khan Resources

Mongolia plans regular Eurobond sales

Mongolia plans to tap international capital markets on a regular basis in future, its central bank governor Naidansuren Zoljargal said on Wednesday. Mongolia's economy, which grew at the fastest rate in the world in 2011, depends heavily on copper exports to China and has been hammered by the global slide in commodity prices in the past few years.

Rating agencies have repeatedly downgraded the landlocked country's debt since it last issued Eurobonds in 2012. According to Fitch, the $12 billion economy now has one of the highest net external debt ratios in the world. Mongolian sovereign and sovereign-guaranteed entities must pay back a combined $1.1 billion as external bonds mature in 2017 and 2018, Fitch said. "There is a strong possibility we will go into the Eurobond market again," Zoljargal said in an interview on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). The timing and details of the next issue will be determined by the new government following legislative elections in June.

But Zoljargal said "the market will see us regularly." "They will take the Mongolia risk, and we want to get our share of financing through the market, and do our financing properly and transparently and to communicate regularly." Zoljargal said international banks were too downbeat on Mongolia's growth prospects, after the World Bank in April slashed its 2016 economic expansion forecast to 0.7 percent and to 2.7 percent in 2017.

"The World Bank and others are too pessimistic. I am certain we can do much better this year," said Zoljargal. He said he expected growth could top 4 percent this year and 6 to 7 percent annually within two or three years and thereafter, driven by diversification of the economy, particularly in the agricultural sector.

Mongolia's economy grew 2.3 percent in 2015, according to the World Bank. Unlike some of its commodity-focused peers, Mongolia has no plans to seek assistance from the World Bank or the International Monetary Fund, said Zoljargal. "We have 2 percent inflation and our balance of payment current account deficit is 5 percent. I don't see a need for any programme. It's very, very healthy macro numbers we have there."
Copyright Reuters, 2016

Christianity in Mongolia


Turkic mound in Mongolia to be converted into museum

Turkey's official development agency TİKA will be converting a mound in Mongolia into a museum

Editör / Internet  14:37 May 15, 2016  Yeni Şafak

The Turkish International Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) announced that they will be converting a Turkic mound, Mayhan Uul Kurgan, belonging to the ancient Göktürk Khanate, in collaboration with Mongolian authorities.

The kurgan in the Bulgan province of Mongolia will be converted into museum and protected by TİKA.

Veysel Çiftçi, TİKA coordinator for Ulan Batur, said that the kurgan is the only source on ancient Turks' understanding of art.

A kurgan is a tumulus, a type of burial mound or barrow, heaped over a burial chamber, often of wood. They are mounds of earth and stones raised over a grave or graves.

The Göktürk Khanate was first established in 552 by the Ashina clan of the Göktürks in medieval Inner Asia. The khanate survived until 744, when it was overthrown by the Uighurs.


Key victory in campaign to save Lake Baikal from Mongolian 'eco-threat'

By The Siberian Times reporter
13 May 2016
Russian government proposes intriguing solution if Ulaanbaatar halts plans for hydropower dams on the Selenga River.

In 2015 Russian Ministry of Natural Resources warned of a devastating impact on the ecosystem of Lake Baikal, which is already facing severe challenges. Picture: Zapovednoye Pribaikalie
The World Bank has assured Moscow that it has suspended plans to finance two major projects on the river, which environmentalists fear would cause major damage to the world's oldest and deepest lake. 
Funding from the bank was seen as a important to the building of two out of three major dams, one on the Selenenga, and one on the Orkhon River, a tributary.
Greenpeace was among the groups calling on the World Bank to block funding because of the threat to Baikal which contains 20 per cent of the world's unfrozen freshwater. 
Director of international cooperation at the Natural Resources Ministry, Nuritdin Inamov, said: 'Colleagues from the World Bank have heard us, and we have received a letter from Washington.
'The World Bank freezes the work on the project and, moreover, at the moment we are preparing the visit of a World Bank delegation to Buryatia and Irkutsk region so the representatives of the World Bank can hear the opinions of local citizens.'
Selenga's springhead in Mongolia

Selenga River
Springhead of Selenga river in Mongolia. Delta of the Selenga River at Lake Baikal. Pictures: lusika33, NASA
He stressed: 'We are working on this issue with the Mongolian side and the World bank, which is one of the anticipated sources of financing for this work, as well as with representatives of UNESCO and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, which provided assistance in providing an expert assessment. 
'A meeting with Mongolian partners in Ulaanbaatar is planned for sometime between 20-29 May in order to impact the Mongolian side's position on the need to conclude work on this project by abandoning it.'
He made clear Russia is ready to offer major assistance to Mongolia in exchange for an abandonment of the hydro schemes.
'We're not just saying no to projects, we're offering options that would make it possible to preserve Baikal, preserve good relations with Mongolia and resolve these energy and economic issues,' said Inamov.
Moscow is offering Mongolia alternative options to supply Russian electricity, he said. 'Russia has excess capacity at power plants. It is possible to increase the capacity of the Gusinoozersk-Darkhan power transmission line, a new power line could be built.
Shuren HPP
The plans in Mongolia to build several more plants, one involving the Selenga River, are likely to add further strain to the unique eco-system of the Baikal region. Picture: Dr Jaroslav Vrba/UNESCO-IHP
'Mongolia could be offered the position of transit country for supplies of Russian electricity to China. This would enable Mongolia to earn cash for transit.' The issue is important because of a fall in the level of water in the lake which is of acute concern to ecologists.
Mongolia has argued that the lowering is for natural reasons and that the construction of a reservoir would make it possible to regulate the outflow of water from the lake. 'Russia is opposed to such an approach, because the natural flow is disrupted,' said Inamov.
The representatives of Greenpeace Russia believe that the position of the World Bank is important also because it can convince the Chinese authorities, who are funding  the construction of the hydro project on the Eg river. 
The construction has already started. It violates the previous agreement between Russia and Mongolia that the works will start only after the project will be approved by Russian side and will not harm Baikal. 
Egyin-Gol HPP

Egyin-Gol HPP
The construction of hydro project on the Eg river, which may also harm the Lake Baikal, has already started with Chinese financial suport. Pictures: Eg River Hydroelectric Project
The struggle around the construction of the hydro power plans on the Selenga and Orkhon started in 2012. At the time, the WWF opposed the project as it would undermine the population of sturgeon, omul and other valuable fish species of Lake Baikal. 
The conflict worsened in 2014, when Mongolia deported a Russian ecologist, who opposed the construction of the HPP on Selenga. In 2015 Russian Ministry of Natural Resources warned of a devastating impact on the ecosystem of Lake Baikal, which is already facing severe challenges. The position of the Ministry was backed by President Vladimir Putin.
The level of Lake Baikal on 18 April 18 was measured at 455.72 metres, compared with an official minimum acceptable level of 456 metres. It is even lower than the lowest point of last year. In 2015 Baikal water level decreased to 455.86 metres and then started to increase. The forecast for this year is that in late May the level can decrease even more. 
Thought to be 25 million years old, Lake Baikal stretches for 650 kilometres (400 miles) through south-eastern Siberia, north of the Mongolian border. It is up to 1,700 metres deep. 

Source:Siberian Times

Guarded Confidence in Mongolian Democracy

A high court ruling on the country’s electoral system has thrown Mongolia into political turmoil.


Mongolia set to pay $70 mln to end Khan mine dispute-source

May 13 Mongolia is ready to deliver a $70 million payment to Toronto-listed uranium miner Khan Resources, a government source said, wrapping up a seven-year dispute that tarnished the country's reputation as a hot mining destination.
The resource-rich country that relies on China to buy nearly all of its resources is settling disputes with miners one by one to help revive foreign investment after four years of economic decline.
Mongolian Prime Minister Chimed Saikhanbileg has repeated the slogan "Mongolia is open for business" on visits around the world in the hopes rebooting the economy, which the Asian Development Bank projects will grow just 0.1 percent this year.
"We want to show that we're trying to improve our relationships and reputation," said a Mongolian government source. He said $70 million had been deposited into an escrow account for payment to Khan Resources on Monday.
The source asked not to be named as the transaction had not yet been completed.
Mongolia's Ministry of Finance was not immediately available for comment.
Last year, a Paris tribunal ordered Mongolia to pay about $100 million to Khan Resources as compensation for canceling its uranium-mining licences for the the Dornod uranium project in 2009 and handing it over to Russia's ARMZ.
At a meeting during a major mining conference in Toronto in March, Mongolia and Khan came together and settled on a payment of $70 million.
The dispute with Khan Resources wraps up just as Rio Tinto and its partners are set to resume work on a $5.3 billion expansion of the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine following a three-year delay due to disputes with the Mongolian overnment.
Investors are also keeping close watch on the Gatsuurt gold mine in Mongolia, where Centerra Gold Inc has waited seven years for mining rights. (Reporting by Terrence Edwards; Editing by Richard Pullin)

Source:Reuters news agency

Mongolia launches nationwide vaccination to tackle serious measles outbreak

ULAN BATOR, May 12 (Xinhua) -- Mongolia launched a nationwide vaccination campaign on Thursday to combat a serious measles outbreak, targeting 18-30-year olds.
According to the Mongolian Health Ministry, as of May 6, a total of 19,194 measles cases were recorded nationwide and 59 infants died of measles infection.
The ministry said most of the infected were students and infants.
United Nations Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF) provided the current batch of measles vaccines for around 624,000 young people in Mongolia.
Vaccination centers have been set up in universities, colleges and family clinics in the country.
The Mongolian government hopes the campaign, which will last until May 25, would contain the outbreak and reduce infection cases.
The current measles outbreak started earlier this year, and spread to all provinces and cities of Mongolia. Kids have been prevented from going to kindergartens and schools in some badly-hit regions. The capital city of Ulan Bator is most seriously hit.
Two years ago, the Mongolian government claimed that measles had been eliminated in the land-locked country.
The public and non-governmental organizations have criticized Mongolian health institutions for not being fully prepared for the current outbreak.

Source:Xinhua news agency

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