Aid Group Doubts Taliban Role in Medical Team’s Killing

Team's Driver Being Held by Afghan Govt

The International Assistance Mission (IAM), a humanitarian aid group which has been operating in Afghanistan for decades, downplayed claims of responsibility by the Taliban for the killing of 10 members of a medical team.

Dirk Frans, the group’s executive director, said he doubts the claims because they came so long after the killings, and said that police had originally suspected bandits of being responsible, as the team’s valuables had all been stolen.

The driver for the team, the only apparent survivor, has also been arrested by the Afghan government and is being held by the Interior Ministry. Spokesmen for the ministry declined to say whether they believed the driver was an accomplice for the killers.

At any rate, IAM maintains, they have no plans to leave Afghanistan. The organization says it has been operating in Afghanistan since 1966, and had a presence through the failed Soviet occupation and the Taliban’s government, where they apparently operated unfettered.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.