Militants mount deadly attack on Pakistan charity

Suspected Islamist militants yesterday stormed an office of World Vision, a US-based Christian aid agency in Pakistan, killing six Pakistani aid workers after singling them out and then blowing up the building.

Nuclear-armed US ally Pakistan is battling al-Qa'ida-linked militants who have launched a string of attacks over the past few years, including some on foreign targets.



Gunmen burst into the World Vision office in Oghi village in Mansehra district, about 50 miles north of Islamabad, at about 9am local time, police and a witness said.



"About 10 men came, they were all wearing masks. They kicked the doors down, took everyone out of their offices, put them in one place and then started shooting," said an office administrator, who asked to be identified only as Asif.



"They threw a bomb as they were leaving," he said.

The office was largely destroyed by the blast, which left a crater by the main door. Bits of broken concrete and glass littered the floor, which was also strewn with wrecked office furniture and equipment.



A door plastered with decorations for a birthday was blown off its hinges. Nearby, a calendar on a glass-strewn desk showed a workshop had been scheduled for Wednesday.



Pools of blood lay under an upturned chair and under a nearby desk. A trail of blood stained a concrete sidewalk at the back of the building.



World Vision said the six dead were Pakistani members of staff and it was suspending all operations in the country.



Seven members of staff were wounded and one was missing, the agency said in a statement, adding that its relief and development work in Pakistan was conducted by Pakistanis.



"Those who kill humanitarian workers must be reminded that they are not only killing their own country's residents, but also people seeking to improve the lives of victims of poverty and injustice," it said.



Mansehra town, in North West Frontier Province, has been a hub for relief efforts following an earthquake that killed 73,000 people in October 2005.



The area has been generally peaceful although there have been occasional attacks. In 2008, gunmen attacked an office of the Plan International aid agency in Mansehra town, killing four Pakistani staff.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Application Support Engineer - Software

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A small rapidly expanding IT So...

The Grange Retirement Home: Full Time Care Team Manager

£22,400: The Grange Retirement Home: This is a key role which requires a sound...

Guru Careers: Pricing Analyst

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...

Guru Careers: Membership Administrator

£23K: Guru Careers: We're seeking an experienced Membership Administrator, to ...

Day In a Page

Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

The ZX Spectrum is back

The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

The quirks of work perks

From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

Is bridge becoming hip?

The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

The rise of Lego Clubs

How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
5 best running glasses

On your marks: 5 best running glasses

Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada