UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday voiced his outrage at an attack on a UN vehicle in Garowe, Somalia’s Puntland region, which resulted in the death of ten people, including four UN staff, and injury to several others Midnimo.com reported.
The UN chief “condemns in the strongest terms this attack against UN staff who are working to provide humanitarian and development assistance to the people of Somalia, including the country’s children, many of whom are in desperate need,” said a statement issued here by Ban’s spokesman.
“The secretary-general conveys his deepest condolences to the family and friends of the victims, and wishes the injured a speedy recovery,” said the statement.
“The secretary-general reiterates that terrorist attacks will not erode the commitment of the whole United Nations family to supporting the people and government of Somalia in rebuilding peace and prosperity in their country,” the statement said.
At about 8:00 a.m. local time on Monday, a suspected improvised explosive device (IED) targeted a UN vehicle in Garowe in northeastern Somalia. The four killed UN staff were from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
A UNICEF statement said that the IED attack occurred when they were traveling from their guest house to the office, normally a three-minute drive. Emergency response operations are ongoing.
UNICEF has been in Somalia since 1972 and its programs are now focused particularly on areas such as water, education, child health nutrition and the protection of children. The UN agency is working for some of the most vulnerable children and families in that part of the country.
Earlier on Monday, the UN Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) also condemned the attack calling it a “complete disregard for the lives of people working on the humanitarian and development needs of the people of Somalia is despicable.”
“I am shocked and horrified by what took place today in Garowe, ” Nicholas Kay, the special representative of the UN secretary- general for Somalia and head of UNSOM, said in a statement.