Afghan Christians mourned the attack on a Christian hospital in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul. The attack, perpetrated by a security guard hired to protect the hospital, claimed the lives of three American doctors working at the hospital. Attacks on Christians and Westerners have increased in recent months as Afghanistan transitions to a post-war era. Please pray for the future of Afghanistan and Afghan Christians.
5/10/2014 Afghanistan (BosNewsLife) – Afghan Christian were mourning Sunday, April 27, three Americans who were shot and killed at a Kabul hospital funded by an American Christian charity.
The attacker, a policeman employed as a security guard at the CURE Hospital, was captured, the ministry said earlier. The Taliban have claimed responsibility for similar attacks this year, but made no comment about Thursday’s shooting.
Those killed included a doctor, and a father and son visiting the hospital, Health Minister Suriya Dalil said. “As they were walking out of the hospital, the security guard opened fire on them, killing three and wounding another one,” the Interior Ministry said.
Among the dead was Dr. Jerry Umanos, a Chicago pediatrician who volunteered for nearly a decade in Afghanistan training medical residents and seeing patients, according to the Chicago health center where he worked for more than a quarter century.
“He was a loving, caring physician who served all of his patients with the utmost of respect,” Reuters news agency quoted Dr. Bruce Rowell, a pediatrician at Chicago’s Lawndale Christian Health Center, as saying.
The security guard shot himself after the attack and was treated at the hospital before being transferred to Afghan custody, Mark Knecht, chief financial officer of Cure International, said in a televised statement. Knecht said two other people were injured, but did not elaborate.
“Please also pray that God may give strength to their families and friends, besides Afghan believers in India, who are discriminated and those back home in Afghanistan, who are persecuted,” Afghan Christians said in a statement monitored by BosNewsLife.
The shooting occurred in the grounds of the Cure Hospital, which specializes in children’s and maternal health. It is considered one of the country’s leading hospitals, in addition to being a training institution.
It came as a major setback for CURE, a network of charitable hospitals, which began operating in Kabul in 2005, at the invitation of the Afghan government, with 27 doctors and 64 nurses working there.
CURE said it had delivered “life-changing medical care and the good news of God’s love to children and families with treatable conditions.”
Worldwide since 1998, “our hospitals and programs in 29 countries around the world have seen over 2.1 million patients, performed over 150,000 surgeries, and trained over 6,600 medical professionals,” the group said.
Thursday’s attack came amid growing attacks against Christians and Westerners in the country. Nearly three weeks ago Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus, 48, was killed and reporter Kathy Gannon, 60, wounded while they were sitting in the back of a car in the east of the country.