Somalia's vital Aamin Ambulance service 'faces closure'

The only free ambulance service in Somalia’s capital is under threat of closure and is having to use fewer vehicles, its founder has told the BBC.

Aamin has a fleet of 16 ambulances but can now only afford to operate 10 on a regular basis in Mogadishu, which suffers regular bomb attacks.

“If the service stops it will be difficult to save victims’ lives,” founder Abdukadir Abdirahman said.

There are no publicly funded health services in Somalia.

The BBC’s Ahmed Adan in Mogadishu says whenever a bomb goes off, Aamin ambulances are seen speeding to the scene to transport the injured to hospital.

Aamin, which means “faithful” in Somali, was started in 2006 and has become a vital part of the emergency services responding to attacks from al-Shabab Islamist militants, he says.

‘They stopped me bleeding to death’

It is run by about 30 volunteers, including telephone operators, ambulance drivers, nurses and medical students.

Many of them put their own lives at risk by going into an area that is still under attack to get the injured people out.

Image caption Operators are on hand 18 hours a day to take calls and despatch the ambulances

Every day, the Aamin helpline, which is open from 06:00 local time to midnight…

Continue Reading This Article At BBC News

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