Red Cross Restored in Afghanistan
Jun. 27, 1999
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) _ After receiving security guarantees from the Taliban religious army, the International Red Cross on Sunday resumed full-scale operations in the embattled country, a Red Cross statement said.
Two weeks ago, 10 Red Cross staff _ eight Afghan nationals and two foreigners _ were abducted, beaten and robbed in Afghanistan's central Bamiyan province.
The Red Cross responded by reducing its staff and operations to skeletal levels while it negotiated with the Taliban for fresh security guarantees.
The Taliban's supreme leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, announced Tuesday a five-year jail term for anyone found guilty of harassing foreign aid workers in Afghanistan.
In its statement, the Red Cross said operations in Afghanistan were back to normal. There were no other details.
The Red Cross provides a range of services in Afghanistan, ranging from medical care to organizing prisoner visits.
The Taliban rule roughly 90 percent of Afghanistan and the opposition, comprised of ethnic and religious minorities, controls the remaining 10 percent of the country. The two sides are fighting on several fronts in northern Afghanistan.