Two Foreign Aid Workers Shot Dead in Somali Capital

Posted December 30th, 2011 at 4:30 am (UTC-5)
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A disgruntled former employee has killed two foreign aid workers in the Somali capital, Mogadishu. Officials say the shooting occurred Thursday at the offices of the medical aid group Doctors Without Borders.

The organization said late Thursday that a 53-year-old emergency coordinator from Belgium and a 44-year-old Indonesian doctor were victims of the shooting. Both were working to provide emergency medical assistance to displaced persons in the war-torn city.

Doctors Without Borders provided few details of the shooting, but several eyewitnesses identified the gunman as a former Somali employee who had been dismissed from his job on Wednesday.

“The gunman was fired from his job yesterday; he came to the compound today and managed to sneak through the patients, and kill the doctors. We were all scared when we heard the sound of the gunshots.”

Police say the gunman was taken into custody.

Doctors Without Borders says it plans to relocate some of its staff from Somalia for security reasons following the shooting.

Mogadishu is one of the world's most dangerous places for foreign workers.

The attack comes less than a week after three aid workers with the World Food Program were shot and killed in the central Hiran region of Somalia.

The impoverished Horn of Africa nation has not had a stable government since the 1991 coup. Militant Islamist group al-Shabab is fighting to take control of the capital Mogadishu and impose strict Sharia law in the country.