Deaths among humanitarian workers

Mani Sheik, Maria Isabel Gutierrez, Paul Bolton, Paul Spiegel, Michel Thieren, Gilbert Burnham

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


Wars between states have been largely replaced by internal conflict and anarchy, which have put the lives of civilians and humanitarian workers at ever increasing risk. Between 1985 and 1998 nearly half of deaths traced were in workers from UN programmes, and a quarter were in UN peacekeepers. Most deaths were due to intentional violence (guns or other weapons), many associated with banditry. One third of deaths occurred in the first 90 days of service, with 17% dying within the first 30 days; the timing of death was unrelated to previous field experience. The number of deaths peaked with the Rwanda crisis in 1994 and has been decreasing for all groups except for non-governmental organisations, where it continues to increase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)166-168
Number of pages3
JournalBritish medical journal
Issue number7254
StatePublished - Jul 15 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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