For the third year in a row, Syria has remained the deadliest place to be an aid worker, according to an analysis done by CARE International.
A devastating 57 aid workers have lost their lives since the beginning of this year, including 18 in Syria – the largest humanitarian death toll for the third year running – and where a war has been raging since 2011.
While Syria tops the list in terms of deaths, largely as a result of aerial bombing, the world’s newest nation, South Sudan ranks top on the list of the most dangerous places to be an aid worker, with the most security incidents (abductions, robberies and harassments) recorded in 2019, according to studies by Humanitarian Outcomes.
In its new report, Humanitarian Outcomes – an independent research organization that provides global data on aid-worker security – notes that national aid workers continue to bear the brunt of the violence compared to their international colleagues.
The specific risks faced by female humanitarians are of specific concern. Sexual violence against female humanitarian workers occurred in eight percent of violent attacks last year, according to findings by Humanitarian Outcomes, but the number of reported incidents suggests that both victims and organizations may be vastly under-reporting the problem.
Rosalind Crowther, CARE South Sudan’s Country Director says: “Throughout the world, women play a vital role in every aspect of crisis response. … South Sudan continues to experience the greatest number of major attacks on aid operations and we know that every time the rules governing fighters’ conduct in war are broken, human suffering intensifies. Ultimately, attacks on aid workers hurt the world’s poorest.”