aid workers

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Attack on Syrian Aid Convoy a 'Circle of Madness'

Witness tells 'NYT' everything went 'from paradise to hell' in a flash

(Newser) - Assistance for nearly 80,000 people in the Syrian town of Uram al-Kubra was on its way in a 31-truck convoy last week when the endeavor was blown to bits by airstrikes , killing nearly two dozen people and decimating 18 of the convoy's vehicles, per the New York Times ... More »

Aid Worker's 4-Month Ordeal in Captivity Is Over

Kerry Jane Wilson was taken by armed men in April from Jalalabad

(Newser) - Katherine Jane Wilson, an Australia aid worker kidnapped by armed men in Afghanistan in April, has been released, NBC News reports. "She is now safe and well," Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said in a statement, adding she's "relieved" for the woman called "Kerry Jane" by... More »

UK to ISIS: We'll Hunt You for 'Act of Pure Evil'

Cameron comes out swinging after apparent execution of David Haines

(Newser) - David Cameron emerged from an emergency meeting this morning with harsh words for Islamic State militants in the wake of yesterday's video that purports to show the beheading of British aid worker David Haines : Calling the execution—which hasn't been officially verified, though a UK Foreign Office rep... More »

Aid Barred From Gassed, Starved Syrian Town

'Let them starve,' says one pro-regime fighter

(Newser) - A month after a sarin gas attack in Moadhamiya outside Damascus, Syrian officials have blocked aid workers from getting food and medical supplies into the town, the Wall Street Journal reports. Some 12,000 residents, including some rebel fighters, have been forced to forage, picking olives, vine leaves, figs, and... More »

Another Loser in Sandy's Wake: the Red Cross

Its slow reaction has left some victims fuming

(Newser) - Despite massive fundraising efforts , the Red Cross' response to Hurricane Sandy has left many victims unsatisfied, reports Reuters in a lengthy look at the group's efforts. It finds several factors fueling the disappointment:
  • In advance of the storm, the Red Cross set up five staging areas in places it
... More »

Kidnapped Aid Workers Freed in NATO Helicopter Raid

US-led team rescues 4 in Afghanistan

(Newser) - Two foreign aid workers and two Afghan colleagues were rescued this morning by a US-led coalition team, freeing them 11 days after they were seized by militants, reports the AP . The four, including Brit Helen Johnston and Kenyan Moragwe Oirere, worked for Medair, a Swiss-based NGO. They were traveling by... More »

US, Danish Aid Workers Kidnapped in Somalia

Demining workers seized by pirates

(Newser) - Three aid workers who were helping to remove land mines in northern Somalia have been kidnapped by gunmen who attacked their convoy. The three—a 32-year-old American woman, a 60-year-old Danish man, and a Somali colleague—were seized on their way to an airport and security officials believe they are... More »

Karzai Ban May Squash US-Led Rebuilding Effort

US official: 'We might as well go home'

(Newser) - US-backed reconstruction projects—worth upward of $1.5 billion—are grinding to a halt, as firms begin to shutter them over the Afghan government's refusal to lift its ban on the use of private security contractors, reports the Washington Post . An official called the development "catastrophic" to America's effort... More »

US Grenade May Have Killed British Aid Worker

Linda Norgrove died in flubbed rescue effort

(Newser) - Though initial reports stated that Linda Norgrove's Taliban captors detonated a bomb that killed her, the kidnapped British aid worker may have actually been killed by a grenade thrown by American forces during the flubbed rescue attempt in Afghanistan. British PM David Cameron made the announcement today, but defended the... More »

UK Aid Worker Killed in Botched Afghan Rescue

Linda Norgrove had been kidnapped Sept. 26

(Newser) - A British aid worker kidnapped in Afghanistan last month was killed last night in a failed rescue attempt. UK Foreign Secretary William Hague said the UK received a tip about where Linda Norgrove was being held, and "given the danger she was facing," decided "her best chance... More »

Survivor Tells of Medics' Last Moments

Gunshots, pleadings, death

(Newser) - The first sign of danger was the crackle of gunfire over their heads. Ten gunmen, their faces covered, rushed toward terrified humanitarian workers and began shouting "Satellite! Satellite!" —a demand to surrender their phones. Moments later, 10 of them lay dead, including two women hiding in the... More »

3 US Soldiers Killed in Attack on Pakistan Girls' School

Bomb targets convoy traveling to school's opening ceremony

(Newser) - Three US soldiers were among at least 10 people killed when the Pakistani Taliban targeted the opening ceremony of a girls' school today. At least 70 people, including many schoolgirls, were injured when a roadside blast hit a group traveling in a convoy guarded by a military escort, the BBC... More »

American Helps Pull Wife From Haitian Rubble

Former CBS worker Frank Thorp was 6 hours from capital

(Newser) - A former CBS employee made a mad dash from rural Haiti to its devastated capital yesterday just in time to assist workers in rescuing his wife, an aid worker, from the rubble of her organization’s headquarters. Frank Thorp was 100 miles away from Port-au-Prince—a 6-hour drive—when he... More »

Attacks on Aid Workers Hit Record in 2008

It's more dangerous to distribute aid than fight as a UN peacekeeper

(Newser) - A shocking number of fatal attacks on international aid workers made 2008 the most dangerous year yet to perform such work, Reuters reports. Last year, 260 workers were attacked on the job, 122 fatally; the majority were working in Somalia, Darfur, or Afghanistan. The Center on International Cooperation’s study... More »

US Aid Worker Shot Dead in Pakistan

Gunman kills man and driver

(Newser) - Gunmen shot and killed an American aid worker as he traveled to work today in northwestern Pakistan, the latest in a spate of attacks on foreigners in the militancy-wracked country. The shooting occurred in University Town, an upscale area of Peshawar where a top US diplomat was attacked just a... More »

Aid Worker Murders Cripple Somali Relief

As crisis reaches flashpoint, 'organized terror campaign' drives out help

(Newser) - Aid workers are fleeing Somalia, even as global food prices soar and a full-blown famine is feared, in response to what officials say is an organized campaign of violence. Messages posted in the capital and sent to aid organizations threaten: “We know all the so-called aid workers. We promise... More »

Zimbabwe Halts Aid Groups, Detains Tsvangirai Again

Mugabe accuses charities of supporting the opposition

(Newser) - Zimbabwe today ordered all charities operating in the country to quit their work, saying they would not be allowed to resume until they had promised not to interfere in the upcoming election, the Guardian reports. The government also detained opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai for the second time this week, Reuters... More »

Burma Agrees to Accept All Aid

Junta drops opposition to aid workers entering country

(Newser) - Burma has agreed to let international disaster relief workers into the country to help with the aftermath of Cyclone Nargis, Bloomberg reports. The junta's about-face came after  UN chief Ban Ki-moon, who flew in yesterday, met the nation's  reclusive military leader, Senior Gen. Than Shwe. The UN hopes to ramp... More »

Burma Relents on Foreign Docs, Aid Workers

But only from ASEAN member nations

(Newser) - Two and a half weeks after cyclone Nargis hit, Burma finally agreed today to allow foreign medics and disaster experts into the battered country, reports the BBC—but only from ASEAN member nations. UN chief Ban Ki-Moon also plans to jet to Burma on Wednesday to bring additional pressure to... More »

US Aid Plane Lands in Burma

Official death toll at 32K; observers say it could be triple that

(Newser) - After days of negotiating, a US aid flight landed today in Rangoon, the BBC reports. It’s the latest sign Burma’s military junta might be relaxing its restrictions on foreign aid—a French charity’s plane also touched down—but relief workers still aren’t allowed in to distribute... More »

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