Socialist Worker

Hospital’s director held in Afghanistan

Issue No. 2045

The Afghan secret service has imprisoned Rahamtullah Hanafi, the director of the Italian NGO-funded Lashkar-gah hospital in Afghanistan.

Rahamtullah, who was taken last month, is known for having arranged the release of the Italian journalist Daniele Mastrogiacomo.

The Bush administration denounced the negotiations as they involved a “trade” for five Taliban fighters.

Mohammed, who works at the hospital, said, “We give free medical care in a region where many doctors take advantage of the poor.

“Rich doctors don’t like Rahamtullah. And they are friends with the local politicians and bureaucrats. Maybe that’s why he was arrested.”

Some 20,000 people rallied in Rome last Sunday to demand Rahamtullah’s release. They also called for the release of Daniele’s Afghan translator who is still being held by the Taliban.

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Sat 7 Apr 2007, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 2045
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