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Fighting Forces MSF Ex-Pats to Leave Somalia


The fighting in Somalia has affected efforts by the medical aid organization Doctors Without Borders, also known as MSF.

Rupert Miller is the logistics coordinator for Doctors Without Borders. From Nairobi, he spoke to VOA English to Africa Service reporter Joe De Capua about the status of their operations.

“Unfortunately, at the end of last week, because of the instability in Somalia, especially in the air, we had to make the difficult decision to withdraw our ex-pats (ex-patriots) from Merera project in the south. And over the last 48 hours, there other three MSF sections working in Somalia have reluctantly had to make the same decision on insecurity grounds,” he says.

Nevertheless, he says fieldwork goes on. “Essentially we will continue to remotely manage and operate our projects, which we’re quite used to doing in Somalia because there’s fairly regular evacuation of ex-pats. So the facilities will continue, but because of the increased insecurity, especially in the air with helicopters and planes, we cannot fly in and out of Somalia with that level of insecurity at the moment,” Miller says.”

Doctors Without Borders says it will monitor the situation on an hour by hour basis.

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