Suicide bombing: Remains of SA victims expected next week

2012-09-22 00:00

THE remains of the eight South Africans killed in a suicide car bombing in Kabul on Tuesday will likely be returned to their loved ones next week.

Department of International Affairs and Co-operation spokesperson Nelson Kgwete said that it was not yet clear when the remains of those killed in Afghanistan would be repatriated.

“We do not have a timeframe as yet and we are still engaging with the company that employed the individuals,” he said.

He added that the discussions with ACS/Balmoral centred on whether the remains would be repatriated by the military or by a commercial contractor. He could not be drawn to comment further.

Spokesperson for ACS/Balmoral Chantal van Wyk echoed this, saying that no date for the return of the mortal remains could be given.

“We have no idea at this stage, and obviously for the comfort of the families we want this done as soon as possible,” she said.

“We have appointed parties in Afghanistan to assist us with the repatriation and this is all I can say at this point.”

Darryl Wood, whose partner Brandon Booth was killed in the blast, said in a statement that high medical bills accruing from their nine-year-old son, who died of cancer, made it necessary for him to work in high risk areas like Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and more recently Afghanistan.

“He was hoping to finish at the end of this year as we have just had a second daughter and we thought it was important for the family.

“Whilst we are battling to deal with our grief, our thoughts are also with the loved ones and families of the other victims who, like us, are devastated at the loss of a family member through such a violent act,” she said.

She added that Brandon had said they never believed they would be targeted.

“Brandon always told me that South Africans were seen as allies in Afghanistan and we never believed they would be targeted; we are battling to come to terms with this deliberate attack on innocent civilians.”

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