The UN children's agency warns many poorer countries will not meet the 2015 Millennium Development Goal of cutting that figure by two thirds. The situation is worst in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia, it said .
Last year, 9.2 million children aged under five died across the world. It warns that malnutrition is now a contributing cause in around a third of deaths
Central and eastern Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean and East Asia and the Pacific countries have cut deaths among under-fives by over 50% since 1990. But over the same period, deaths in western and central Africa have fallen by just 18%; in sub-Saharan Africa the figure was 21%, while in eastern and southern Africa it was 26%.
In Sierra Leone, the country with the worst under-five mortality rate in the world, 262 out of every 1,000 children die before their fifth birthday.The rate for industrialised nations is just six deaths per 1,000 live births.