Unknown armed men killed six International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) workers who were driving to deliver livestock materials in the Jawzjan province Wednesday, the organization said. Two workers are still unaccounted for.

The Taliban denied responsibility in a Tweet from spokesman Zabihullah Mujahidm, however the identities of the gunmen still have not been determined. “It is not yet clear who carried out the attack or why,” Red Cross said in a statement.

Monica Zanarelli, head of the ICRC delegation in Afghanistan, said in a statement, “This is a despicable act. Nothing can justify the murder of our colleagues and dear friends.”
“At this point, it’s premature for us to determine the impact of this appalling incident on our operations in Afghanistan. We want to collect ourselves as a team and support each other in processing this incomprehensible act and finding our two unaccounted for colleagues,” she continued.

Peter Maurer, the Red Cross president, said, “We condemn in the strongest possible terms what appears to be a deliberate attack on our staff. This is a huge tragedy. We’re in shock.”

Lutfullah Azizi, the provincial governor of Jawzjan, told CNN that “unknown gunmen” committed the attacks in Qoshtapa district of Jawzjan province. He added that police are still searching for the two missing workers.

According to Amnesty International, violence in Afghanistan has been rapidly increasing. ISIS claimed responsibility on twitter Tuesday for a suicide bombing that killed at least 20 people and injured thirty-five others in an explosion.

Biraj Patnaik, Amnesty International’s South Asia director, said, “By targeting the ICRC, who devote their lives to helping people in desperate need, the perpetrators have demonstrated a horrific contempt for human life.”

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