UNHCR Mourns Death of Dr. Annalena Tonelli
United Nations High Commission for Refugees (Geneva)
October 6, 2003
Posted to the web October 6, 2003
UN High Commissioner for Refugees Ruud Lubbers today expressed grief at the murder Sunday night of Annalena Tonelli, a 60-year-old humanitarian worker who had dedicated the last 33 years of her life to helping Somalis.
"All of us at UNHCR are devastated by Dr. Tonelli's death," said Lubbers, who in June presented the Italian woman with the 2003 Nansen Refugee Award. "We were so proud to have been able to honor the wonderful work she did for the poorest of the poor, including many refugees, over the past three decades. She dedicated her life to helping others, carrying out her noble mission in remote, difficult places little noticed by the outside world. In doing so, she touched the lives of thousands of people, demonstrating that individuals can still make a huge difference. We mourn the loss of a truly great woman."