QUETTA: The decapitated body of a kidnapped British doctor working for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was found by the roadside on Sunday in Quetta, police and Red Cross officials said.
Sixty-year-old Dr Khalil Rasjed Dale, a Yemen-born British national, was kidnapped on January 5 by armed men near his office in the Chaman Housing Scheme — a high-security zone where offices of all international organisations are located.
According to Superintendent Police Malik Arshid, police found Dale wrapped in plastic near the Killi Umar area on the Airport Road. It was then shifted to the Sandeman Provincial Hospital for autopsy.
“A sharp knife was used to sever his head from the body,” said Safdar Hussain, the first doctor to examine the body. “He was killed about 12 hours ago.”
The police also found a note by the kidnappers with the body stating that they killed the ICRC official because the organisation did not fulfill their demands despite repeated warnings. The ICRC, however, did not confirm if they had been approached for ransom money.
“The ICRC condemns in the strongest possible terms this barbaric act,” ICRC Director-General Yves Daccord said in a statement.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague also condemned the killing.
“This was a senseless and cruel act, targeting someone whose role was to help the people of Pakistan, and causing immeasurable pain to those who knew Dale,” Hague said in the statement.
Meanwhile, the Foreign Office promised to hold the killers accountable.
Khalil had been working as a health-programme manager in Balochistan for almost a year.
The ICRC has now curtailed its activities in Pakistan, with the closure of three of its centres.
(With additional input
Published in The Express Tribune, April 30th, 2012.
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