Four UN workers among dead in Somalia attack

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Anthony Lake. UN Photo (file)

A suicide bomb attack on a UN vehicle in Somalia has killed four of the organisation's workers and claimed at least three other lives, police said Monday.

Four other UNICEF workers are in a critical condition following the attack, for which Al Shabaab militants have claimed responsibility.

Daniel Johnson has more.

The attack happened as the UN staff were making their way to work in Garowe city in the north of the country, UNICEF said.

It's a journey that normally takes around three minutes.

The UN children's fund said in a statement that its workers "were travelling from their guesthouse to the office".

Anthony Lake, UNICEF executive director, called the attack on the agency's workers "horrific".

He said it was "an assault not only on them but on the people they served" and that they and the wounded workers were "heroes".

Pictures posted on the internet show the mangled remains of a minibus with the letters "UN" clearly visible in blue on its bonnet and flank.

UNICEF said the workers were an integral part of the agency's work and "dedicated to improving the lives of others".

The agency is now contacting families of the staff and airlifting the injured from the site of the attack, which is in Puntland, a semi-autonomous region.

Police reportedly believe that suicide bomber's body is among those found at the scene.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations

Duration: ’59″

 

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