More proof that these monsters have nothing to do with us and our religion. Why do these beasts continue to do such things? These creatures WANT to see others suffer as well, so they kill aid workers. And some of you wonder why I do not like these people…
Long-haired gunmen burst into the white stone building and killed four charity workers helping earthquake victims, then wrecked the office with grenades and set it on fire. Police came, but did not intervene.
In a tactic reminiscent of neighboring , Islamic militants are attacking aid groups in the ‘s volatile northwest, and local authorities appear incapable — or unwilling — to stop them.
The threat has forced several foreign agencies to scale back assistance to survivors of the October 2005 earthquake that killed at least 78,000 people and left 3 million homeless — risking the region’s recovery from the worst natural disaster in the country’s history.
The Feb. 25 attack on employees of Plan International, a British-based charity that focuses on helping children, was the worst in a series of threats and assaults on aid workers in the northern mountains where-style militants have expanded their reach in the past year.
Nearly a month later, menacing letters are still being sent to aid organizations. Although all four victims in Mansehra were Pakistani men, Islamic extremists despise the aid groups because they employ women and work for women’s rights.
Local officials in Mansehra, who spoke on condition they not be identified for fear of retaliation, said letters from extremists distributed March 13 and 14 also warned schools to make sure girls are covered from head to toe and to avoid coeducation.
[…]”Everyone is scared,” said Naeem Awan, whose nearby hair salon had its windows blown out by the force of grenades lobbed by the militants. “They can open fire and attack people and get away. How is it possible?”
Since the attack, aid organizations have withdrawn their female field workers. Authorities are asking them to move their offices into a gated community in Mansehra with its own police post.
Despite the additional security, officials of three international aid groups said they wanted to keep working but felt they could not rely on local police for protection. The officials requested anonymity because they did not want to risk problems by publicly criticizing Pakistani authorities.
Women employees say they fear for their safety.
“It was a real act of brutality and you feel very worried, and still there is no real arrangements from the police for security,” said Aneela Tobassam, a Pakistani worker for U.S.-based Mercy Corps who provides vocational training to women. Even inside her office, Tobassam, an ethnic Pashtun, wears a large shawl covering her head.
“I don’t feel safe outside right now, but I won’t leave. I will stay here and I will do my work even if for now it is inside the office,” she said.
The intimidation of aid groups has increased in recent months. They have received anonymous threats, and last October two attacks in nearby Battagram district forced a temporary suspension of relief operations.
There was a bombing outside the office of a local charity, Strengthening Participatory Organization, which wounded eight people. Attackers also sprayed the compound of CARE International with automatic gunfire, but no one was hurt.
Fear that militants are targeting foreigners and their organizations increased over the weekend when a bomb killed a Turkish woman at a restaurant popular with foreigners in Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad. Twelve other people were wounded, including four Americans.
Graham Strong, country director for U.S.-based World Vision, which heads an umbrella group of 20 international aid organizations operating in Pakistan, voiced concern that aid workers here will face the same problem as in.
During nearly four years working there, Strong saw the ability of charities to work dwindle due to lawlessness, government incompetence andassaults that police failed to stop.
“I hope we are not going down the same road here,” Strong said in. “We are generally concerned that things might be changing.”