Northern Ireland

Maud Kells: NI missionary recovers after shooting in Democratic Republic of Congo

Maud Kells
Image caption Maud Kells is recovering after she was shot at her home in Africa

A missionary from County Tyrone who was shot and wounded in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is now in a stable condition in hospital.

Maud Kells, 75, is able to speak and recognise people, the director of the charity for which she works, has said.

The nurse from Cookstown was shot twice in the shoulder by intruders at her home in Mulita.

Ms Kells has worked in Africa since 1968. She received an OBE in the New Year Honours List.

She was originally a missionary nurse and now works for the WEC International mission agency.

WEC director in Ireland Norman Cuthbert said the news about Ms Kells was "very good".

"Maud is a very, very strong lady. She has a very strong faith, I am sure Maud will recover although it has been a very frightening experience for her," he said.

"In some ways, we would consider this miraculous that she wasn't more seriously injured."

Mr Cuthbert said the motive for the shooting was unclear, at this stage.

Douglas Craig, who worked in DRC with Ms Kells, said "she is a remarkable woman".

"She had to wait some time but a couple of doctors were then flown in to help her.

"It's good news that she is in a stable condition.

"There has been rebel activity in the area in the past. The hospital there has been damaged before and she had to help evacuate the building.

"If it's at all possible she'll be back as soon as she can. She is very resilient."

Ms Kells has been involved in the training of Congolese nurses in five hospitals and 30 health centres. She also engages in bible school teaching, supervision of construction projects and speaking at church services.

She trained as a nurse in Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital, she currently serves with the WEC International mission agency.

She spends half of the year in the Congo and the other half at home in Cookstown.

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