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U.N. Asks Lanka To Probe Relief Worker’s Death

[RTTNews, Friday, 5 December 2008 17:33 No Comment]

The United Nations’ top humanitarian official in Sri Lanka has asked authorities in Colombo to initiate a probe into the murder of an aid worker in the east of the violence-hit country, media reports said.

Neil Buhne, the U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator in Sri Lanka, condemned the killing of Norwegian Refugee Council worker A Vigneswaran — the third staff member from the same relief group to have either disappeared or been killed — by unidentified gunmen in Batticaloa last week.

Demanding that the authorities "vigorously pursue" the perpetrators, the U.N. official said humanitarian workers must be able to work without fear to meet their responsibilities fully.

He said a successful investigation resulting in the killer being brought to justice would not only bring solace to Vigneswaran’s family and to his colleagues, but would also reduce this fear and create a conducive environment for the more effective implementation of humanitarian programs in Batticaloa benefiting tens of thousands of persons.

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