A Thoughtful, Analytical Approach to NGO Security

New Zealand aid worker mauled by tiger

Ruth Corlett with Pancake the Tiger
Photo: Ruth with Pancake the Tiger by Corlett family

An aid worker from New Zealand is in hospital after being mauled by a tiger at the Khumsu Chiang Mai Tiger Centre in Thailand. According to Thai media the year old tiger attacked Ruth Corlett after she touched its head during a hands on exhibition at the centre.

According to Stuart, Ruth’s husband, she is remains in hospital but is doing “OK”.

Ruth Corlett and her husband were apparently working with Partners in Thailand near the border with Myanmar.

Partners is a faith based organization working on relief and development.

Gunmen Kill Aid Workers in Somalia

On 11 July gunmen shot and killed Mohamed Muhamoud Keyre, the deputy head of Mogadishu-based, German-funded Daryeel Bulsho Guud (DBG). DBG reported that he had been gunned down as he was performing ablutions at a Mosque at Elasha Biyaha, Mogadishu.

In a separate incident gunmen seriously wounded Ali Bashi, who heads Mogadishu-based charity group, SORDA. Ali Bashi was attacked while distributing food to internally displaced people in Taredishe camp 13 kilometres south of Mogadishu.

Meanwhile, in southern Somalia, gunmen shot and killed a WFP-contracted driver. Ahmed Saali was killed in fighting between convoy escorts and militiamen at a checkpoint in Lower Shabelle region on Monday.

Somali aid worker killed near Mogadishu, another wounded
Somali aid worker killed by gunmen

Armed Men Abduct Aid Worker in Somalia

According to Mareeg Online a local representative of CARE International in Somalia was kidnapped in Galguduud Region on Saturday night. According to a member of the Ceel Dheer administration heavily armed men were seen taking the CARE staff member away.

Mareeg online reports that the staff member had received telephone threats prior to the incident.

Somalia: Unidentified men abduct aid worker in central Somalia

Abduction of Sri Lankan Aid Worker

Sebastian Goodfellow, a Sri Lankan driver for the Norwegian Refugee Council, a humanitarian organization working in Sri Lanka, has not been seen since May 15. It is feared that he has been abducted, possibly by an armed group operating with the tacit support of the security forces.

You can help by going to Amnesty International’s Online Action Center and send a message to President Mahinda Rajapakse and Ambassador Bernard A. B. Goonetilleke.

If you are a blogger please help by linking to the Action Center’s message page.

Abduction of Sri Lankan Aid Worker

Sebastian Goodfellow, a Sri Lankan driver for the Norwegian Refugee Council, a humanitarian organization working in Sri Lanka, has not been seen since May 15. It is feared that he has been abducted, possibly by an armed group operating with the tacit support of the security forces.

You can help by going to Amnesty International’s Online Action Center and send a message to President Mahinda Rajapakse and Ambassador Bernard A. B. Goonetilleke.

If you are a blogger please help by linking to the Action Center’s message page.

Appropriate Response to NGO Kidnappings and Abduction


Image of a man in a blindfold



In the past most NGO kidnappings were conducted by criminal groups seeking economic gain. However in at least the past five years we have seen a marked increase in the number of NGOs who have been kidnapped for political reasons. Confusing the issue are indications that some recent kidnappings may have been 'speculative' in nature. That is to say they were carried out by groups that were primarily criminal in nature but with the intent to sell the victim to the highest bidder.

"Experienced Advice Crucial in Response to Kidnappings" outlines the nature of the kidnapping threat and the steps NGOs should take to prepare themselves. Kidnap insurance, crisis management plans, family support, and media liaison plans are all covered in an accessible manner. If you are an NGO security officer the article might be useful for opening a discussion with senior staff. If you are a programme person you should read it and raise any questions you might have with your security officer.

The article was authored by Bob Macpherson, former director of the CARE International Safety and Security Unit, Christine Persaud, and Norman Sheehan. Between them they have a wealth of experience dealing with NGO security issues.

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