Irish-born UN ambassador Samantha Power’s trip to Cameroon was mired in controversy last night after a truck in her entourage hit and killed a young boy.
The incident occurred near Moloko, northern Cameroon, where Ms Power and her team were headed to meet refugees displaced by Islamist group Boko Haram.
Ms Power said she learned of the death with “great sorrow” and met the boy’s family to “offer our profound condolences and our grief and heartbreak”.
Ms Power returned to the scene several hours after the accident to see the seven-year-old boy’s parents.
Her motorcade had been moving at speeds up to 95kph as locals lined the roads to greet them.
The boy was hit as he ran across two lanes of traffic.
A man was seen running after him, trying to get him to stop.
The vehicle that hit the boy initially stopped, but was ordered by security forces to continue travelling through what was reportedly an unsafe area. An ambulance immediately attended to him instead.
The boy was rushed to a hospital, even though he was fatally injured, said people familiar with the incident, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Several US officials were visibly upset by the death, with one of Ms Power’s party breaking down as Ms Power met refugee children shortly afterward.
Dublin-born Ms Power joined US president Barack Obama’s election campaign team in 2008, and his staff in 2009, serving on the National Security Council.
In 2013, Mr Obama nominated her as the as the new US ambassador to the United Nations.
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