Iraq: UN educational agency condemns killing of Baghdad university professor

3 July 2013 – The United Nations educational agency in Iraq today condemned the killing of a professor at the University of Baghdad and urged authorities to investigate the murder.

According to security reports, Dr. Ahmed Shakir, a specialist in cardio-vascular diseases and professor at the University's Faculty of Medicine, was killed when a bomb planted in his car exploded on 1 July in Zaafaraniyya, south of Baghdad.

“A clear message must be sent to the perpetrators that their acts will not go unpunished,” said Louise Haxthausen, Director of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's Office (UNESCO) in Baghdad.

“UNESCO condemns this terrible act and offers its deep condolences to Dr. Shaker's family and friends, as well as his colleagues and students at the University of Baghdad,” Ms. Haxthausen added.

Acts of violence committed against academics and scientists in Iraq remain a main cause of brain drain, eroding the human capital of the country, the UN agency said.

Teachers and professors are the true advocates of durable peace and sustainable development in Iraq, added Ms. Haxthausen.


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