World Humanitarian Week 2014
Celebrating humanitarian heroes
Asim Syedzada, Assistant Field Safety Officer, UNHCR, Peshawar
Asim Syedzada’s selfless commitment towards humanitarian causes in the militancy-hit Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Province of Pakistan paved his way to further strengthen his security skills.
The 34-year-old Asim joined UNHCR in 2001 as a field security assistant. He was the first United Nations national security staff member in the entire Province.
Asim has witnessed many tragic incidents that have not deterred his resolve. “The day that I joined UNHCR on 4 December 2001, our field staff members, both national and international, were attacked in Mohmand Agency” he recalled, adding that “this was disturbing news for me at the time, but ended up in the introduction of police escorts in KP, that have continued to this day.
Since 2006, due to the rapid increase in the number of security incidents in KP, access to the field has increasingly been a challenge. Asim’s daily work revolves around ensuring that his humanitarian colleagues have safe access to provide assistance to persons of concern to UNHCR.
Asim enjoys working in such a challenging environment. Asim is held in great respect by his colleagues because of his devotion to his profession in good times and bad.
By Qaiser Khan Afridi in Peshawar, Pakistan