5 Nov 2009

UN pulling 600 international staff out of Afghanistan

10:42 pm on 5 November 2009

The United Nations is evacuating 600 of its international staff from Afghanistan because of security concerns.

Taliban militants killed five foreign UN staff in an attack on their guesthouse in the capital, Kabul, on 28 October.

The BBC reports correspondents as saying that the 600 are those not deemed to be doing absolutely critical work.

Several hundred more staff are to be temporarily relocated around the country.

"We will be looking at bringing people back as soon as the security situation allows and secure accommodation is found," a UN source in Kabul told Reuters.

"Instead of having people dotted around the city, they will be consolidated."

The head of the UN mission in Afghanistan, Kai Eide, says it is important to emphasise that the UN is not stopping its work in Afghanistan.