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ICRC activities in Angola - January to June 2002

25-06-2002 Operational Update

All 18 provinces of Angola are covered by the ICRC, either through the sub-delegations or by field delegates travelling from Luanda on a regular basis. Some ICRC activities are carried out in close co-operation with the national Red Cross Society.

 

 

The Angola delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) carries out a range of activities to assist and protect victims of armed conflict. Currently, the delegation employs 34 expatriate staff and 392 Angolan employees, working in the capital, Luanda, as well as in the sub-delegations in Huambo, Kuito, Lobito and offices in Lubango and Luena. All 18 provinces of Angola are covered by the ICRC, either through the sub-delegations or by field delegates travelling from Luanda on a regular b asis. Some ICRC activities are carried out in close co-operation with the national Red Cross Society, the Cruz Vermelha de Angola (CVA).

The figures provided refer to the ICRC's activities in Angola in the months from January to June, 2002.

 
Protection - Restoring Family Links 
 

Following the signing of the ceasefire agreement between the parties to the conflict on April 4th, the Tracing Agency of the ICRC has seen a substantial increase in its activities. Thus, in the first half of this year alone, 7'470 Red Cross messages have been collected and 8'330 distributed in the different provinces of Angola, including in formerly inaccessible areas. In order to provide a better service in the face of this increase, a large number of new tracing offices has been restablished throughout the country.

485 families have opened tracing requests asking the ICRC for assistance in finding out the whereabouts of their loved ones. At the same time, 286 unaccompanied minors have been registered by the ICRC. Assisted by new software and digital cameras, the delegates strive to localize their family members. Since the beginning of this year, it was possible to reunite 19 children with their families. It is expected that another 28 pending reunifications will be possible shortly.

All these activities are carried out in close collaboration with the national Red Cross Society (CVA).

 
Assistance to conflict victims - Agriculture and Food Security 
 

The ICRC's Agriculture and Food Security programmes are concentrated in the provinces of Bié and Huambo. In Huambo, food distri butions are made to 38'000 beneficiaries on a regular basis, in the camps for displaced persons (IDPs) of Cruzeiro and Caala. The same number of beneficiaries is given seeds in order to achieve food autonomy over time. Furthermore, horticultural seeds are to be distributed to 10'000 families in the province of Bié and twice (for the nacas and lavras planting seasons) to 36'000 families in the province of Huambo. Tree seedlings, providing for 500'000 trees, are distributed by the ICRC in these same provinces.

Emergency food rations were distributed to 8'300 persons in Chilembo, south of Huambo, following the opening of formerly inaccessible areas after the signing of the ceasefire agreement.

 
Health and Nutrition 
 

The ICRC in Angola works in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health, providing assistance in government hospitals. In this way, the ICRC supports the Surgical and the Paediatric Wards of the Central Hospital in Huambo, for a range of 15'000 beneficiaries each. Furthermore, in the provinces of Huambo, Bié and Uige, the ICRC supports 12 Primary Health Care centers and promotes HIV/AIDS preventive action for a range of 300'000 beneficiaries, in collaboration with the national Red Cross Society (CVA) and the Ministry of Health.

 
Mine Action 
 

The ICRC continues to support three Ministry of Health rehabilitation centers, located in Luanda, Huambo and Kuito, and provides support to a range of 3'000 disabled persons from 7 provinces. The assistance provided covers technical and financial support to these 3 orthopaedic centers, including the manufacture and fitting of prostheses, as well as the manufacture and distribution of wheelchairs and crutches. All these services, including physiotherapy, transport and accomodation, are provided free of charge.

 
Water and Sanitation 
 

Well and spring protection is carried out by the ICRC in Kuito (Bié Province) for a range of 12'000 beneficiaries, and emergency sanitation programmes are provided to 28'000 persons. In collaboration with the national Red Cross Society (CVA), soap is distributed to 280'000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Kuito and Huambo. In the Central Hospital in Huambo, the ICRC has supported the maintenance of the water and sewage system.

 
Non-food Items and Shelter 
 

20'000 families of internally displaced persons (IDPs), mainly in Huambo and Bié provinces, were given non-food items, in collaboration with the national Red Cross Society (CVA).

 
Preventive Action - Dissemination 
 

The ICRC actively promotes the dissemination of International Humanitarian Law and the principles of the Red Cross Movement to members of the armed forces, the police, traditional authorities and civilians, both through formal dissemination sessions (so far this year to close to 1'000 members of the security forces) and through more informal sessions and theater presentations (to close to 6'000 persons so far). Regular radio programmes in Luanda, Huambo and Kuito also contribute to the dissemination of these principles.