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High Commissioner Ogata expresses shock and sorrow at the death of aid worker

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High Commissioner Ogata expresses shock and sorrow at the death of aid worker

30 November 1997

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees today expressed shock and deep sorrow at the tragic death of a French female aid worker who had been kidnapped in Tajikistan.

"This is a terrible tragedy. I am deeply saddened by the loss of another aid worker, who devoted her service to help others in a foreign land," the High Commissioner for Refugees, Mrs. Sadako Ogata, said.

"I can only imagine what her family and those who were close to her are going through right now. I wish to express my sincere condolences to them," she added.

Ms. Kareen Mane was employed in Tajikistan by a local Tajik NGO assisting Afghan refugees and asylum-seekers under a UNHCR-funded programme. She was kidnapped in Dushanbe on the night of 18 November.

According to available information, she was injured in a grenade explosion and died at a Dushanbe hospital early this morning.

UNHCR is seriously concerned about the increasing number of incidents of violence against aid workers in recent years. Late last year, the international community expressed outrage at the cold-blooded killing of ICRC staff in Chechnya.

"It is simply unacceptable that humanitarian aid workers become deliberate targets of violence. We will continue to raise our voice and strongly condemn such cowardly acts," the High Commissioner said.