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ICRC visits Ethiopian prisoners in Eritrea

01-09-2000 News Release 00/32

Geneva (ICRC)  –  The State of Eritrea acceded to the four 1949 Geneva Conventions on 29 July last. In so doing, it became the 189th State party to the four Conventions. Over the past month the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has thus been able to begin discharging its treaty-based mandate to visit people protected by the Third and Fourth Geneva Conventions. From 29 August to 1 September its delegates visited the Ethiopian prisoners of war being held at Nakfa camp in Eritrea. ICRC staff have also visited a prison and two internment camps, registering civilians protected by the Fourth Convention.

All visits have been carried out in accordance with the organization's customary working procedures, with full cooperation from the Eritrean authorities.

The ICRC has been regularly visiting Eritrean prisoners of war and civilian internees held in Ethiopia in connection with the international conflict between the two countries which broke out in May 1998.