American NGO official, driver killed in Pakistan

November 12th, 2008 - 8:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Nov 12 (IANS) An American citizen working for an NGO and his driver were killed in Peshawar Wednesday, police said.Police said Stephen Deviancy, head of the FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Areas) Livelihood Development Programme funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), was attacked in the University Town, international NGO officials’ preferred place for stay in the violence-hit capital of North West Frontier Province (NWFP).

“As he was coming out of his main office in the University Town, the attackers opened fire on him and killed him along with his local driver,” a police official told IANS from Peshawar over telephone.

A spokesman for the US embassy here said they were concerned over the murder and condemned this brutal act.

The spokesman avoided comments when asked if this will affect USAID work in Pakistan, saying it was unfortunate that a person who was working for FATA development was murdered.

The USAID started the livelihood development programme this year as part of their five-year plan for the tribal areas. The Rs.12 billion project is aimed at building schools, roads, health facilities and development works.

The police official said that a security camera installed at the victim’s office had captured images of the assailants and a search operation was launched in Peshawar and adjoining tribal areas.

Violence has surged in FATA, bordering Afghanistan, and adjoining areas of NWFP where recent US missile strikes have fuelled anti-American sentiments.

There are no official figures of casualties but according to unofficial estimates, more than 500 people have been killed so far in suicide terror attacks while the number of those killed in the US air strikes is over 2,000.

Three people were killed in a suicide attack outside a sports stadium in Peshawar Tuesday at the concluding ceremony of an inter-provincial sports event.

Gunmen ambushed a vehicle carrying three members of the US consulate in Peshawar in late August, but they escaped unhurt after their driver took evasive action.

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