Overseas Civilian Contractors

News and issues relating to Civilian Contractors working Overseas

US abandons consulate site in Afghanistan, citing security risks

Washington Post May 6, 2012

After signing a 10-year lease and spending more than $80 million on a site envisioned as the United States’ diplomatic hub in northern Afghanistan, American officials say they have abandoned their plans, deeming the location for the proposed compound too dangerous.

Eager to raise an American flag and open a consulate in a bustling downtown district of the northern Afghan city of Mazar-e Sharif, officials in 2009 sought waivers to stringent State Department building rules and overlooked significant security problems at the site, documents show. The problems included relying on local building techniques that made the compound vulnerable to a car bombing, according to an assessment by the U.S. Embassy in Kabul that was obtained by The Washington Post.

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May 7, 2012 Posted by | Afghanistan, Civilian Contractors, Safety and Security Issues, State Department | , , , | Leave a comment

Eight U.N. staff killed in Mazar-e Sharif, two beheaded

Reuters)

Eight foreign employees of the United Nations were killed on Friday in the northern Afghan city of Mazar-i-Sharif after protesters over-ran their compound, police said, in what looks to be the deadliest ever assault on the U.N. in Afghanistan.

Two of the dead were beheaded by attackers who also burned parts of the compound and climbed up blast walls to topple a guard tower, said Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai, a police spokesman for the northern region.

The chief of the mission in the city was wounded but survived, and the dead included employees of Norwegian, Romanian and Swedish nationalities, he added.

Four Nepalese Guards were reported killed

Global Post Asia Pacific April 1, 2011   12.10

At least eight foreign United Nations workers were killed Friday, two of them beheaded, in an attack on a U.N. compound in the northern Afghanistan by demonstrators protesting a Quran burning by a U.S. pastor.

Protests against the burning of a Quran by Florida Pastor Wayne Sapp of a Quran on March 20 were held in several Afghan cities on Friday, Afghanistan’s Noor TV channel reported.

The Quran burning took place in the presence of Terry Jones, another U.S. pastor who last year drew condemnation over his aborted plan to burn the Quran on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

The U.N. workers — including five guards working for U.N. and two other people employed at the complex, the AP reported — were killed in the northern city of Mazar-e Sharif when the protest there suddenly turned violent.

Afghanistan Crossroads CNN April 1, 2011  11:00

Eight workers for the U.N. and four Afghans were killed, said Abdul Rauof Taj, security director of Bulkh province. At least 24 people were injured, he said.

The attack followed a demonstration against the reported burning of a Quran this month by Florida pastor Terry Jones, who gained international attention last year with his plans to burn a Quran, the U.N. source with knowledge of events said.

Jones is the pastor of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Florida. He canceled plans to burn a Quran last year, on the ninth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Last month, however, with far less attention than he attracted last year, Jones reportedly burned Islam’s holy book.

The church says on its website that it “put the Koran on trial. The event is over, the Koran was found guilty and a copy was burned inside the building.”

The attack on Friday happened at the operations center of the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan in Mazar-e Sharif, said Dan McNorton, a U.N. spokesman.

“The situation is still confusing and we are currently working to ascertain all the facts and take care of all our staff,” he said.

Initial indications are that knives and small arms were used in the attack, according to a U.N. spokesman who declined to be named.

April 1, 2011 Posted by | Afghanistan, Civilian Casualties, Civilian Contractors, Private Security Contractor, Safety and Security Issues, United Nations | , , , , , , | Leave a comment