Oxfam pulls out of northern Afghanistan after staff killed

31st August 2010, Comments 0 comments

International aid agency Oxfam has suspended its operations in a northern region of Afghanistan after three local staff members were killed by a roadside bomb, a spokeswoman said Tuesday.

Two Afghan staff and a volunteer were killed on Monday by an improvised explosive device in the region of Badakhshan, a spokeswoman said.

"Oxfam deeply regrets the deaths of two of its Afghan staff members and a community volunteer and the injuries to one staff member and one community volunteer," said a statement issued by Oxfam's British branch in London.

"They were deeply committed to improving the lives of other Afghans and our thoughts are with their families at this time.

"We have temporarily suspended operations in Badakhshan and are reviewing all security measures and protocols. At present, Oxfam has no plans to discontinue its work in Afghanistan."

There have been few insurgent attacks in Badakhshan, although it was there that the bullet-riddled bodies of eight foreign medical workers, including six Americans, were found after a suspected robbery on August 7.

Northeast Afghanistan has been regarded as largely free of the Taliban-led insurgency troubling other parts of the country.

© 2010 AFP

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