Three injured as rebels in Burundi ambush UN food convoy

3 April 2001

A group of rebels has attacked a United Nations food convoy in Burundi, leaving one person in critical condition and two others injured, a UN spokesman announced today.

The ambush occurred on Monday morning in Muriza, south-eastern Burundi, according to spokesman Fred Eckhard. During the attack by 10-15 heavily armed rebels, a driver and two passengers were wounded by gunshots. "One truck went off the road, one was stopped on the road, and the third truck escaped with no one injured," he said.

The wounded were initially transported to a nearby hospital by the military in the area before being evacuated by plane to Bujumbura.

"The driver, shot in the head, remains in critical condition today," Mr. Eckhard said. "The two passengers, shot in the legs, are doing well and might be discharged today."

The convoy was carrying approximately 60 tonnes of food. While the food was not looted, personal belongings and money were taken from the truck crews.

WFP's operation in the south east of Burundi feeds 20,000 people. There are no plans to suspend operations in the area, although security will be reinforced, Mr. Eckhard said.

 

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