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Unknown gunmen kill two humanitarian worker in West Darfur

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September 10, 2015 (KHARTOUM) - Unidentified gunmen killed two people in ambush on a humanitarian team in West Darfur state, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian affairs (OCHA) said on Thursday.

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A Nigerian peacekeeper based in El Geneina, West Darfur, inspects a car, with remnants of blood, transporting Senegalese soldiers ambushed by unknown assailants. Three soldiers were killed on 13 October 2013 (Photo: Albert Gonzalez Farran/UNAMID)

"The attack took place (on Tuesday 8 September) about 40 kilometres from Geneina in Kreinik area, as the aid workers were returning from a routine mission. Unidentified gunmen ambushed the vehicle, killing the driver and a security official. Two health ministry staff and a WHO doctor in the vehicle were unharmed," said OCHA.

The assailants stole the vehicle and fled the scene.

"The UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan, Ms Marta Ruedas, "strongly condemns the fatal attack," further said the statement.

Ruedas stressed this attack demonstrates that insecurity continues to hamper humanitarian activities in Darfur where some 2.5 million people are affected by the 12-year conflict in the region.

The joint team of the Sudanese health ministry and WHO were working as part of an assessment team currently operating throughout Darfur to assess the presence of the guinea-worm disease (dracunculiasis) with a view to certifying Sudan as dracunculiasis-free.

WHO is the only organization mandated to certify countries as free of the disease.

“WHO deplores this attack on our health workers and government colleagues. Health services are a pivotal part of all humanitarian work, and we will continue to work tirelessly to provide this basic right to the most vulnerable people in Sudan,” said Dr. Naeema Hassan al-Gaseer, WHO Representative in Sudan.

Kreinik, which is located east to the state capital Geneina, hosts about 80,000 displaced people, in three main camps.

Since January 2015 there have been 131 security incidents in Darfur that have affected humanitarian workers and peacekeepers, including abductions, armed attacks, carjackings and crime.

(ST)

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