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Pinoy worker among wounded in Afghan attack

- Pia Lee-Brago -

MANILA, Philippines - A Filipino worker was among the wounded in the attack staged by Taliban militants on the base of a US aid organization in Afghanistan on Friday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said yesterday.

The DFA cited the report of the Philippine embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan and clarified earlier reports that a Filipino volunteer worker was among the casualties in the suicide bombing attack by Taliban militants at the compound of aid contractor Development Alternatives Inc. (DAI), located in the northern city of Kunduz.

“The Philippine embassy in Islamabad reported to the DFA that there is no Filipino fatality during a recent attack in the Afghanistan province of Kunduz,” DFA spokesman Eduardo Malaya stressed.

Malaya identified the Filipino worker as Joven Topanan.

He said Topanan is currently receiving medical treatment at the Provincial Reconstruction Team offices in Kunduz.

“The embassy is coordinating with Topanan’s principals in ensuring his safety and welfare,” Malaya said.

Topanan works for Edinburg International, a security sub-contractor of Development Alternatives Inc. He was tasked to assist in implementing local governance and community development programs in Kunduz.

In July last year, 10 overseas Filipino workers were killed when a civilian helicopter crashed at a key NATO airbase in Southern Afghanistan.

All 10 casualties were workers of Fluor Company that refused to provide any information on what could have caused the helicopter crash.

Another Filipino worker was also killed in a rocket attack at the Kandahar Airbase in March 2009.

Norbert Malana Hobayan Hobayan died from injuries sustained during the attack by militants against the second biggest military installation in Afghanistan.

Officials said Hobayan was employed as a carpenter for Recon International.

Following the attack, the DFA reiterated its advisory against traveling to Afghanistan.

“The DFA reiterates that the Philippines has a labor deployment ban to Afghanistan in view of the unstable security situation in said country,” Malaya said.

A FILIPINO

ANOTHER FILIPINO

DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS

DEVELOPMENT ALTERNATIVES INC

EDINBURG INTERNATIONAL

EDUARDO MALAYA

FLUOR COMPANY

IN JULY

ISLAMABAD

KUNDUZ

TOPANAN

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