agasfer (agasfer) wrote,

Somalia's Mother Teresa shot while aiding patients

October 7, 2003

Hargeisa, Somalia: An award-winning aid worker, nicknamed the "Mother Teresa of Somalia", has been shot dead in the breakaway enclave of Somaliland, officials said yesterday.

Annalena Tonelli, 60, who came from Italy, was visiting a ward for tuberculosis patients in Borama General Hospital when two men walked in and one shot her twice in the head. The men walked out, leaving patients and hospital officials in shock, witnesses said.

Tonelli won the UN Refugee Agency annual humanitarian award in April for her work with displaced Somalis. She had worked with Somalis for 33 years.

Her clinic was set up to fight tuberculosis and raise awareness on HIV/Aids and the harmful effects of female genital mutilation.

The agency's boss Ruud Lubbers said: "We were so proud to have been able to honour the wonderful work she did for the poorest of the poor, including many refugees, over the past three decades."

Tonelli had previously been kidnapped and also subjected to beatings and death threats. - Reuters

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