Monday, March 24, 2003

Red Cross aid worker killed in Kandahar

International Red Cross staff member Ricardo Munguia was shot and killed in an ambush north of Kandahar City 24th March 2003.

A water supply engineer, Ricardo Munguía was a citizen of both Switzerland and El Salvador. He joined the International Committee of the Red Cross 1999.

He was fatally shot on March 27, 2003, by gunmen while on assignment with several Afghan colleagues in Oruzgan province, although another account placed the incident at a Taliban checkpoint in the Shah Wali Kot district of Kandahar. He was 39.

This marked the first murder of a foreign aid worker in Afghanistan in at least five years. Munguía's murder sparked concerns that security issues would prevent aid workers from reaching more of Afghanistan's most vulnerable people.

According to eyewitness Abdul Salam, after stopping Munguía and his three-vehicle convoy, gunmen made a satellite telephone call to Mullah Dadullah. When the conversation ended the gunmen shoved Munguía behind one of the vehicles, siphoned gasoline from the tanks and used it to set the vehicles on fire. Munguía was then executed, reportedly hit by more than 20 bullets.