United Nations Condemns Killing of MSF Workers in Ethiopia

The United Nations condemned the killing of three Medicins Sans Frontieres employees in Ethiopia’s Tigray region as a breach of international law.

“This is totally unacceptable and an appalling violation of International Humanitarian Law,” UN Secretary General António Guterres said in a statement Saturday. “The perpetrators must be found and severely punished.”

The three staffers -- Maria Hernandez, MSF’s emergency coordinator; Yohannes Halefom Reda, the assistant coordinator; and Tedros Gebremariam Gebremichael, the organization’s driver -- were killed while working in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, the medical charity said. Their vehicle was found empty on Friday morning with “their lifeless bodies” lying nearby.

“Today we are in mourning after receiving confirmation of the death of three of our colleagues who were working in Tigray,” MSF said in a statement Friday.

It wasn’t clear who was responsible for the attack. The Ethiopian Foreign Ministry said the three victims were killed in an area where supporters of Tigray’s former ruling party are active, according to a statement on Twitter.

“The government’s call for military escort in such areas was to avoid such tragic killings,” the ministry said.

Guterres expressed solidarity with humanitarian partners “who are risking their lives to provide protection and relief to people in Tigray.”

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