Gulf Middle EastEEAS High Representative

An agent of the European embassy in Syria killed (update)

(BRUSSELS2) Ahmad Shihadeh was employed at the European Union delegation in Damascus, Syria, in the political section and the economic section, since 2007. He was killed on Tuesday (12 March) during a rocket attack in the district of Deraya, where he then lived “ that he provided humanitarian aid to the population of the neighborhood ". The High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs, Catherine Ashton, addressed her “ deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues in the delegation “, adding” Ahmad was brave for his courage and selflessness". He is the first employee of a European Union delegation killed in a conflict since the creation of the European diplomatic service. But not the first European personnel killed on mission (read also: *In Memoriam. Diplomats and soldiers who died on EC / EU missions).

An active pacifist, arrested twice

During the temporary closure of the Delegation in December 2012, Ahmad put all his energy into humanitarian and peaceful causes. He was particularly involved in humanitarian aid working with the local council of Deraya, of which he was one of the founding members, according to information communicated to B2 by those close to him. He also helped design and write for an opposition newspaper in Deraya and had a reputation for active pacifism during the Syrian War. Aged 32, he was “ despite his young age already a great man », writes one of his colleagues. “For me, Ahmad was the very type of people who represents the New Syria, ready to help others to bring about social and political changes for a better life for all Syrians”. He had been arrested twice and had spent seven months in detention, without any charges against him.

Call to end the violence

The High Representative took the opportunity to launch an appeal "to all parties to take urgent steps to end the violence that has caused the deaths of 100.000 innocent citizens and (push) more than a million refugees to seek asylum in neighboring countries »

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).