UN, US condemn attacks on humanitarian workers

[TamilNet, Monday, 22 May 2006, 14:07 GMT]
United Nations Resident Co-ordinator Colombo, and the Embassy of the United States in separate press releases issued Monday, condemned the grenade attack on international non-governmental organizations in Muttur, Trincomalee that resulted in injuries to local and international staffers.

Full text of the UN's press release follows:

The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sri Lanka is appalled by the continuing despicable attacks on humanitarian workers in the north and east.

Yesterday’s grenade attacks on three international non-governmental organizations in Muthur, Trincomalee district, resulted in serious injuries to one international staff member and two civilians. Last week an employee of the Norwegian Refugee Council was shot dead in Vavuniya while returning home from work.

We strongly condemn these attacks which undermine the ability of the humanitarian community to freely conduct operations, and which instill fear into the thousands of men, women and children to whom we provide relief and assistance. These attacks must be investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice.

The Government of Sri Lanka and all parties to the conflict must ensure the protection and safety of all humanitarian aid organizations working in the country.

All parties must urgently halt the current escalation of violence which is affecting innocent civilians, and work urgently towards a peaceful solution to the current impasse.

Full text of the press release from Embassy of the United States of America follows:

U.S. Condemns Attacks on NGO Offices

COLOMBO, May 22, 2006— The United States condemns the grenade attacks committed Sunday, May 21, against three international non-governmental organizations (INGO’s) in Muttur. The unprovoked attacks against Inter SOS, ZOA and the Non-Violent Peace Force resulted in injuries to several people, including an expatriate NGO worker. These INGO’s are working in Sri Lanka to meet humanitarian needs and bring people together in the search for a lasting peace in the country. Violent attacks against such organizations are deplorable and undercut efforts to lay the groundwork for a resumption of talks leading to a final settlement.

 

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