Red Crescent worker killed in Syria

Published: Sept. 19, 2011 at 11:26 AM

GENEVA, Switzerland, Sept. 19 (UPI) -- Violence against volunteer medical workers in Syria is completely unacceptable, the international Red Cross said after a volunteer died from gunshot wounds.

The International Committee of the Red Cross said last week that volunteers with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent were wounded, one seriously, when their ambulance was fired upon after it ran over downed power lines. One of the volunteers died of his injuries during the weekend, the ICRC said.

"It is completely unacceptable that volunteers who are helping to save other people's lives end up losing their own," Beatrice Megevand-Roggo, the ICRC's head of operations for the Near and Middle East, said in a statement.

Two other Red Crescent volunteers were injured when their ambulance was hit with heavy fire as they tried to evacuate an injured person to a hospital in Homs. The ICRC said the attack on Red Crescent workers last week wasn't an isolated event in Syria.

Human Rights Watch said its investigation into the incident determined the ambulance was hit with 31 bullets from all four sides of the vehicle. A volunteer from the organization told the rights group that there was no fighting in the area when they came under attack.

Syria is in the midst of a bloody uprising against President Bashar Assad.

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