Wounded Swedish charity worker flown home for treatment


A Swedish charity worker who was critically wounded in a gun attack in the city last week was flown home on Monday for specialist medical treatment, officials said.
Birgitta Almby, 72, was coming home from work when she was shot in the chest.
She was working in Lahore for the US-based Full Gospel Assemblies, which describes itself as a “church fellowship” with congregations all over the world.
Chief doctor at Jinnah Hospital said she was still unconscious and her condition was stated to be critical.
“There was a special request from Sweden. They sent a special air ambulance manned by a team of doctors and we shifted her today,” he added.
A spokesman for the Full Gospel Assemblies, Pastor Liaquat Qaiser, confirmed that her condition was serious and that she had been flown to Sweden for better treatment.
The organisation runs charities in Pakistan including a technical training institute, adult literacy centre and orphanage. According to police, Almby has been living in Pakistan for 38 years.
Police officer Owais Malik said the culprits had not yet been identified.
In August 2011, US development worker Warren Weinstein was kidnapped after gunmen tricked their way into his Lahore home. Pakistani officials believe he is being held by al Qaeda and Taliban extremists in Pakistan’s lawless northwest.
In April, a British Muslim Red Cross worker was beheaded nearly four months after being kidnapped in the southwestern city of Quetta.
This attack came amidst a wave of sectarian violence that had gripped the nation. On the day of the attack, over 100 Ahmadi graves were also desecrated. Moreover, a roadside bomb on the same day ripped through a police van as it was patrolling on the outskirts of Peshawar, killing two officers and wounding two others, said senior police officer Javed Khan.
The attack on the charity worker was condemned by all quarters. In a statement issued by a spokesman of the Foreign Office, the government condemned the attack and said that the government was hoping for Alemby’s full recovery. Human Rights Commission of Pakistan also condemned the act and demanded the security of minorities and social workers in the country.