Intended for healthcare professionals


Egil Kristian Tynæs

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 01 July 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:55

Norwegian general practitioner and humanitarian aid worker

When, as a 62 year old grandfather, Egil Tynæs chose to return to Afghanistan for the second time in two years he would have had few illusions about the chances of meeting the violent fate that eventually befell him. The 2002-3 Activity Report of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), for which he volunteered, is blunt. “Afghanistan is neither safe nor stable,” it reads; humanitarian agencies' cars have been “held up and shot at.” Red Cross engineer Ricardo Munguia had been singled out as a foreigner and murdered in cold blood in March 2003.

However, this year MSF identified Afghanistan as the place with the greatest need for Dr Tynæs's skills, especially in treating tuberculosis. He was not a man to duck a challenge, if he felt that it was the right thing to do. As Norwegian colleagues testify: “When Egil's attention was called to a wronged human being or a patient in need of help, his reaction was simple and straightforward: he wanted to do …

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