Jordan's queen launches children's welfare network

Jordan's Queen Rania joined top female humanitarian leaders Tuesday in launching a global media initiative aimed at improving children's health and education around the world. The Global Women's Action Network for Children would mount a public awareness campaign to reverse high maternal and infant mortality rates and increase girls' access to education, said Marion Wright Edelman, president of the US-based Children's Defense Fund. Queen Rania told The Associated Press in a written interview that the network would push cost-effective measures to improve global conditions for women and children. Knit caps to keep newborns warm and clean razor blades to cut umbilical cords can save three out of four infants, she said. She and Edelman capped a three-day conference on the shores of the Dead Sea, which drew 500 activists, including former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. The United Nations estimates a woman dies in pregnancy or childbirth every minute somewhere in the world, and that 22,000 infants die each day. Some 100 million school-aged children have no education, and the majority of them are girls.