It was with great shock and sadness that I learned about the attack on United Nations workers today in northern Somalia. My thoughts go to the families and colleagues of those who lost their lives or got injured.
The humanitarian situation in the Horn of Africa has deteriorated significantly as consequence of Al Shabab terrorism and the spill-over impact of the crises in South Sudan and Yemen.
This is terrible news for the most vulnerable people in Somalia, but also for humanitarian workers, whose work is ever more difficult. Security threats and restrictions to access people in need make it more important than ever to fully apply and respect humanitarian principles and to recognise the neutrality of the humanitarian action.
We stand with our UN colleagues as they continue their humanitarian and development work in Somalia. Violence against humanitarian workers is a grave violation of International Humanitarian Law – and a crime against the people who dedicate their lives to saving others.