September 5, 2013—A Syrian surgeon working for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), Dr. Muhammad Abyad, has been killed in northern Syria. His body was found on Sept. 3 in Aleppo province. He was 28 years old.
MSF would like to express its sincere condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Abyad, who was working in an MSF-run hospital in Aleppo province treating victims of the conflict.
While the exact circumstances of Dr. Abyad’s death remain unclear, MSF condemns the attack against a surgeon who was relentlessly working to alleviate a desperate humanitarian situation in the region while his own country was at war.
"His death is a terrible loss to his family, to the patients that he was treating, and to MSF," said Joan Tubau, MSF General Director. "We are outraged by this attack against a young and highly motivated surgeon who was working to save the lives of Syrians affected by the conflict."
At such a tragic time, MSF would like to emphasize the obligation to ensure the protection of humanitarian workers. MSF is concerned that such attacks directly impact the ability of aid organizations to provide medical assistance.
MSF teams made up of international and Syrian staff operate six hospitals and four health centers in the north of Syria. Between June 2012 and July 2013, MSF teams in Syria carried out more than 66,000 medical consultations and 3,400 surgical procedures and assisted 1,400 births.