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World Vision Suspends Activity in Afghanistan after Slayings, Presses on in Mideast

ICC Note:

Killing of security guards for World Vision interrupts the charity’s efforts to help rebuild.

By Kevin Donovan

Christian Post (09/02/06) – Following the abduction and killing of two World Vision security guards, the World Vision center in Afghanistan is suspending all movement of staff and vehicles in the northwestern district of Bala Morghab.

Both men had worked with the international Christian charity for over a year, and were valued members of the World Vision team.

The guards were abducted Sunday night when two armed men attacked a World Vision office in Badghis Province . Staff nearby heard shouting followed by two gunshots and a grenade explosion. A vehicle, office and communications equipment was destroyed.

Monday morning the guards were declared missing. At midday, the police found their bodies.

While local authorities and police are carrying out an investigation, other World Vision staff are being relocated temporarily. Trained staff will be providing critical incident debriefings for all World Vision personnel.

In other news, World Vision has recently dispatched its first large convoy of relief aid into southern Lebanon following the Aug. 18 ceasefire.

The charity has assessed the needs of ten villages within the southern Lebanon district of Marjeyoun, which are being repopulated by returning civilians who were displaced from their homes by the month-long conflict.

According to the assessment carried out by World Vision, the villages are in most urgent need of water and electricity, as they are located in the region of heaviest fighting between Israeli and Hezbollah forces.

The convoy consisted of three World Vision trucks, four locally hired six-wheel trucks and two oil tankers sandwiched between white World Vision jeeps. The trucks carried 51 tons of goods, including food and hygiene items, while the oil tankers carried 31,000 liters of diesel.