Wednesday, June 2, 2004

Five Aid Workers shot Badghis Province

Five Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) staff were killed 2nd June 2004 while traveling on the road between Khairkhana and Qala-I-Naw in Badghis province.

They were: Hélène de Beir, Belgian national, Project Coordinator; Willem Kwint, Dutch national, Logistician; Egil Tynaes, Norwegian national, Medical Doctor; Fasil Ahmad, Afghan national, Translator; Besmillah, Afghan national, Driver.

L-R: Helene, Willem, Egil, Fasil, Besmillah
Statement by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) reads: They departed from Khairkhana at 1500 hours in a Toyota Landcruiser. Radio contact should have been established at 1545 hours, but this contact was not established. Two cars were sent to check for the vehicle, one departing from Khairkhana, the second from Qala-I-Naw. The vehicle was located at approximately 1720, about 25 minutes from Khairkhana in the direction of Qala-I-Naw. 

Initial reports from local elders suggested a tragedy had occurred. Through the efforts of the local community the vehicle was brought back to the MSF compound in Khairkhana. The vehicle was back in the compound by 1945 hours and the remaining four expatriate team members and our national staff team confirmed the shooting of our five colleagues.

The condition of the vehicle was described as having been shot through the front windscreen, through the front passenger window, and through the back windscreen. There was also shrapnel embedded in the side of the vehicle, indicating a grenade had been detonated.

It is impossible for us to give any further details as we simply don't know anything more about what happened. Nor do we know who is behind the killings or the motives for it.