Dedicated aid worker, Hassan, killed

Category: Middle East, World Affairs Topics: Iraq Views: 4889

People around the world and specially the people of Iraq are filled with revulsion at the reported murder of Margaret Hassan.

Asia One: A close friend described her as 'one of those slender people with a spine of steel'.

She dedicated most of her working life to easing the plight of ordinary Iraqis. Yet all the good work and the numerous appeals failed to move Mrs Margaret Hassan's captors.

She has apparently been killed, Care International said early this morning.

Mrs Hassan was involved in humanitarian relief in Iraq for 30 years and for the last 12 years she worked for Care as its director.

Shortly after her abduction, patients at a Baghdad hospital took to the streets to protest against the kidnapping.

They credited her with helping to rebuild the medical facility last year, reported CNN.

The protesters carried pictures of her and banners which called for the release of 'Mama Margaret'.

The last project Care completed with her effort was a rehabilitation unit for patients with spinal injuries.

In a poignant demonstration, the patients who could, painstakingly wheeled themselves into the street, held up banners pleading for her release.

The news of her killing was reported by Arab TV network Al-Jazeera.

It said it had obtained a video showing a masked militant shooting a blindfolded woman, who was referred to as Margaret Hassan, in the head using a handgun.

The TV network decided to wait on reporting the news until it confirmed the authenticity of the tape.

After she was kidnapped, her husband Tahseen Ali Hassan pleaded with her kidnappers to let her go, even putting up posters in Baghdad.

He said: 'They should know that my wife has worked almost all her life for the Iraqi people and considers herself an Iraqi.'

Sky News reported that Mrs Hassan was a vocal opponent of international sanctions on Iraq. Before the war to topple Saddam Hussein, she warned it would bring a 'humanitarian catastrophe' on Iraq.

When war broke out, she was determined to stay to continue her work despite the danger. At the time she was taken hostage she was in charge of 60 Iraqis who run nutrition, health and water programmes throughout the country.

But her kidnapping led Care to withdraw from the country.

Mrs Hassan, who was in her 60s, held Irish-British-Iraqi citizenships.

Her family said in a written statement: 'Our hearts are broken. We have kept hoping for as long as we could, but we now have to accept that Margaret has probably gone and at last her suffering has ended.'

She is said to have fallen in love with Iraq more than 30 years ago, when she travelled there as a young bride with her Iraqi husband.

She converted to Islam, learned Arabic and took Iraqi citizenship.

Her film-maker friend, Felicity Arbuthnot, told the BBC recently: 'It was Iraq's children who haunted her, she called the children of the embargo 'the lost generation'.

'Half of Iraq's population is aged below 15. Childless herself, to see her cradle infants stricken with Iraq's myriad of illnesses which have reached epidemic proportions since 1991 - linked to the destruction of water facilities and the chemically toxic and radioactive depleted uranium weapons used - one felt her passion to protect all Iraq's children as her own.'

She said that while filming in an area of exceptional deprivation and poverty in Iraq, a crowd gathered. On seeing Mrs Hassan, thin, stressed faces, broke into wide smiles, children ran and hugged her round the knees chanting: 'Madam Margaret, Madam Margaret...'

Weeks before her kidnap, she told the Independent newspaper's Robert Fisk despairingly: 'There will be a second generation of lost children now.'

Mrs Hassan was kidnapped on Oct 19 by a group that did not identify itself.

The group said on Nov 2 that it would turn her over to an Al-Qaeda-affiliated group - Base of Jihad - if the British government did not pull its troops out of Iraq within 48 hours.

Base of Jihad has been blamed for numerous beheadings of foreigners in Iraq, including the slayings of Americans Nicholas Berg, Eugene Armstrong and Jack Hensley, and Briton Kenneth Bigley. They also claimed responsibility for the killing of a Japanese hostage.

Mrs Hassan's husband has appealed to the kidnappers to return his wife's body.

He said: 'I beg those people who took Margaret to tell me what they have done with her... I need her back to rest in peace.'

Source: Asaia One

  Category: Middle East, World Affairs
  Topics: Iraq
Views: 4889

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Older Comments:
Opps, should have proof read my posting closer. Let us pray that the onerous law recognizing that religious institution (a state may be such) is struck down as unconstitutional. (not the constitution) Our founding fathers left states in which religious preference by a state created a propensity of the state or people to degrade into the support of death and destruction. No nation so conceived should support such a thing. That it is in another nation is not listed as an exception in the first law of for the benefit of the people.

There is more than one way to kill our humanity. Excess, as well as insufficiency of religion, is degrading. I think Margret Hassan realized charity was the foil to legalism, religious or otherwise.

In my dreams the other night I heard The Supreme Being say "Enough". And so I come to know that the likes of the seventh plague of Pharaoh's Egypt will occur, but not to the masses of earth but to those beings of the hidden plains who willfully refuse the rules of peace.
However, as all humans are associated with one or more of these willful beings, it is a warning to humans to bring in their animals and those that toil in the fields. This will be signified by those willing to pray the al-fatiha, it is nondenominational after all, at least in the A Yusuf Ali translation, and others in other languages. It signifies only ones willingness to recognize the lordship of God, Gods last say at judgment, and asks God to show us the straight way.
While the Romans created deserts and called them peace (Falluga) and the Americans create a quagmire of chaos and call it democracy, God does not treat the innocent unjustly, if your children or infirm are unable understand and pray you may pray over them.
When will this start? It already has, but it will follow a path like that of a percolation model of a graph traversal. It will grow in intensity as it moves from contact to contact until there are fewer and fewer untouched beings. So there is time to get the word out.

The disembowelled body with hands and lower legs cut off was found near the bridge over the Euphrates River. Shot with a pistol at point-blank range half the head was missing. Also found were the bodies of an Iraqi man and woman nearby shot to death and locked in a last embrace.,,7374-1363696,00.html

I believe this is the work of Massad and the CIA. No on else on Earth, let alone Muslims, could have pulled this off along with the numerous other "hoodwinked hostage ploys" to divert attention of the masses from their real plans of overtaking the planet under the One World Order of the Free Masons onto the perfectly positioned scapegoat...Islam. What a sad time it is we live in today but at least we have been prepared for it with the Holy Qu'ran and the ahadith of the Last Prophet, Muhammad, sallalahu alayhi wa sallam. May Allah Almighty gather all his sincere and trustworthy believers and enter us into Eternal Gardens, Insha'Allah kheir.

Romesh, she was not killed for being an "infidel", she was killed for political reasons. By your logic, no one should help Hindus in crisis because aid workers in Sri Lanka were attacked by Hindu fascists there. No one should help or emphathize with Hindus because they a brutal legacy of terrorizing their own "lower caste"-- by your logic, not mine. Dont use Hasan's horrific death as a veil for your own bigotry -- its a cheap thing to do.

Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilayhi Raji'oon
(To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return)
"After the grief, the astonishment, heartbreak, anger and fury over the apparent murder of such a good and saintly woman, that is the question her friends - and, quite possibly, the Iraqi insurgents - will be asking: [WHO KILLED MARGARET HASSAN?]

Other abducted women were freed when their captors recognised their innocence.
But not Margaret Hassan, even though she spoke fluent Arabic and could explain her work to her captors in their own language.

If anyone doubted the murderous nature of the insurgents, what better way to prove their viciousness than to produce evidence of Margaret Hassan's murder?

What more ruthless way could there be of demonstrating to the world that the US and Interim Prime Minister Iyad Alawi's tinpot army were fighting "evil" in Fallujah and the other Iraqi cities?

Even in the topsy-turvy world of Iraq, nobody is suggesting that people associated with the government of Mr Allawi had a hand in Margaret Hassan's death. Iraq, after all, is awash with up to 20 insurgent groups but also with rival gangs of criminals seeking to extort money from hostage-taking.

But still the question has to be answered: who killed Margaret Hassan?"

By: Robert Fisk
November 17, 2004 by The Star (South Africa)


who killed Margaret Hassan ?

What could be more obvious than this? The group who did this, and those supporting it, are neither Iraqi freedom fighters nor Muslims. To give them either name is a grievous insult to those who really are. it seems we Muslims face many enemies, without and within.

Bob, I wish I could believe you care about Mrs.Hassan...tell me, are you sorry for what your war criminal troops actions...the deaths of 100000 Iraqi men, woman and children ?
I didnt think so, its not "radical Muslims" but American terrorists who pose a clear and present threat to world peace today.

Marwan, in my opinion Alhambra is incorrect, but you Marwan, in my opinion and that of billion of others you are completely WRONG, to say the least. The audience is still waiting for you to provide us where in the Holy Quran and in the Sunnah of our beloved Prophet, Allah peace and blessing be upon him; such "Islamic license" is granted to perform such acts as this one.

The last thing I like to do is to corner someone, so if you cannot provide any Islamic proof of what you are advancing, the least you can do is present an apology for being wrong, or an explanation of the second phrase of your first paragraph.

I hope you had a very happy Ramadan, because I did, Alhamdoulillah. May Allah guide us all.


Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi raji'un. Verily to Allah we belong and verily to Allah we return.

Actually, I thought mutilation of corpses was considered against Islam. That practice was prominently featured in Fallujah yet again. What might Margaret Hassan's killers and mutilators want the Coalition's supporters to think about them? That such people should be in control of Iraq yet again?

Do they also pledge to eat a piece of the victim's liver, perhaps to make themselves seem even worthier of the Muslim's fear, as if the Muslim was supposed to fear anyone other than Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala? And what other, perhaps less objectionable, tribal customs might they have deemed Islamic? Regardless of any of that, I am confident that Margaret and Hamza will be seen completely restored in Jannah.

Abu Ghraib cost much of Americans' support for continuing America's military presence in Iraq. Margaret Hassan's death and dismemberment seems likely to be even costlier for those who are currently rebelling against a national majority's authority in Iraq. Either the rebels never really "owned" large areas of Iraq in the first place or they appear to be negotiating to receive a poor price for selling those areas to their enemies. Of course, negotiations might now seem to be largely a thing of the past. Ironically, it is the peaceable particularly among the Kurds rather than the rebels who seem more likely to bring about meaningful governance at the provincial level.

Also, at least that wounded man at the mosque in Fallujah received a little medical attention, the day before he was shot, from the comrades of the Marine who shot him. How about Margaret Hassan? Is there any record of her being shown a little compassion on the part of her kidnappers - before she was tormented, murdered and mutilated?

My wish is for a just peace for all those who would wish it for others.

Mrs Hassan dedicated her life to humanitarian work in Iraq. Unfortunately, the islamic kidnappers could not and did not differentiate between a 'good' infidel from 'bad' infidel.

I wonder, if any 'infidel' organization should care to heed to the cry for help from any muslim for any kind of humanitarian help in any and all muslim countries and in all situations, whether the help is for natural disaster (e.g. earthquake, floods, famine) or man made disasters (war, civil strife). From now on, most probably, all western organizations, societies and governments are going to close their eyes and ears, and ignore please for any and all kinds of help, including help for refugees living in camps in Gaza and Palestine. I think, from now on, 'infidels' are going to act and behave like real 'infidels' -- ignore the calamities in the muslim world (and may be even gloat over their plight)'.

After the murder of van Gogh in Holland, may be EU will rethink entry of Turkey into Europe, muslim immigration into Europe and US/Canada. One must remember that it was the western society (including that of US) which created Nazism; I hope that this world does not see Nazism coming back, this time considering muslims to be the 'jews'. Yes, western society is intellectually and physically capable of becoming Nazi like; after all, US passed its 'fascistic' Patriot Act overnight and we may still Patriot Act II soon.

Aslaam alikum,
Marwan, perhaps you can look into the Quran and explain to me and the rest of the world where the making of WAR against non combatants and women and children can be found. I, for one, cannot find it. I find several ayat forbidding such things, but none condoning or advocating them.
Perhaps YOU will be able to explain it on judgement day, but I can't. I cannot explain to anyone how a WOMAN who dedicated her life to improving the lives of the poor, in charity to the Iraqi people could possibly be seen as a threat to Islam. How could the cowardly execution of such a one, and the mutilation of her remains defend our faith? It is about terror, not about Islam. These are not muslims, they are cowards, skulking about. Come out on the field, take off your face masks, if you are so proud of what you have done. but they do not, they hide their faces in shame, as well they should. SHAME to these butchers! SHAME to those who try to cover their sin! The blood on your hands will never come off and will bear witness against you in this life and the next.

I am in shock that this woman was murdered at the hands of radical muslims.

What was the point?
What were they trying to achieve???

I am sure many in the arab world will want to blame bush, or the US military.

Who was it that pulled the trigger?

The blame is on radical Muslims..

I hope the arab world and muslims throughout the world can seperate themselves from the radical muslims who are behaving like animals...

This woman spent her life helping others.

It was pointless to kill her...


It has been considered lately that some insurgants behaviours around beheading and murder is not necessarily related directly to Islamicism doctrine. Instead, what has been proposed is a return to pre islamic ritualistic religion based on other gods/entities. Parallels such as the Aztecs are one example. They regularly sacrificed humans for their gods. There may indeed be evidence of a growing cult similar to this, and being based on a mixture of ancient belief systems based on Ghengis Khan type mythology/and or other ancient pre islamic mongolgian/arabic culture mixed in with pseudo pagan paractice. More research should examine this suggestion, which was written about in USA today newspaper dated 17th November 2004. This could explain, in part, why the logic of the insurgents is so irrational.

inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi rajioon.

bismillahir rahmanir raheem

These people can no longer call themselves Muslims. And shame on us in the rest of the Ummah if we do not speak out with a loud voice. They are pretending to be Muslims but really they are only promoting their own political agenda. The true Jihad is against yourself and your own ego and animal instincts. These people have lost this Jihad.

The rest of the Muslim world should watch this carefully, and keep condeming them as strongly as possible even to the point of capturing them and trying them for murder.

wa allahu alim

MADMAX said:
Alhambra, shame on those who without thinking, directly attribute crimes like this to the insurgents. THINK before you point your fingers at the freedom fighters, THINK who would mostly benefit from this gruesome news. THINK because the insurgents have ABSOLUTELY nothing to gain(and everything to lose) with this kind of lugubrious publicity, THINK again and again until you head aches, and hopefully you will come to the conclusion about who is stooping so low to make the brave and blessed freedom fighters of Iraq look like the under world thugs of the American cities. I hope you had a very happy Ramadan, because I did, Alhamdoulillah. May Allah guide us all.

Shame on the insurgency. I think they really should have let this one live, if they wanted to be sentimentally smart in regards to the Iraqi people... I can see why they killed American and foreign workers, etc, even though I denounce these killings, but this woman was virtually an Iraqi, not a foreign worker. Her family was Iraqi. She married an Iraqi. She worked all of her life for the betterment of the Iraqi people. It's appaling to see how the insurgency has dealt with this murder. Al Qaeda in Iraq denounced the murder though, so I don't know what to think... I mean, decapitating foreign workers is appauling enough, but shooting a defenseless MUSLIM IRAQI woman in the head? That's pure barbarism.