KARACHI: FC Barcelona striker Lionel Messi called on Monday for action to end infant deaths, the media reported.
The Argentine soccer star appeared in a video for the UN Children's Fund.
In the UNICEF video, Messi pointed out that the number of infant deaths has decreased from nearly 12 million in 1990 to almost 6.9 million last year.
UNICEF also pointed out that around 19,000 children under the age of 5 die every day from escapable and preventable causes such as pneumonia, diarrhea and malnutrition.
On November 2, 2012, Messi became a father for the first time following the birth of his son Thiago Messi.
Messi, holder of the new record for most goals in a calendar year, is the fourth football player to win three Ballons d'Or and the second player to win three consecutively. He is expected to receive his fourth consecutive Ballon d'Or this year.
Messi became a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF in March 2010, and has become an outspoken supporter for the most vulnerable children.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2012