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Iraq: ICRC helping civilians amid conflict

23-03-2006 News Release 06/24

Geneva/Baghdad (ICRC) – The recent upsurge of violence in Iraq has caused a high number of civilian casualties and driven many people from their homes

In keeping with its determination to fulfil its mandate in acute emergencies in Iraq, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is aiding civilians affected by the fighting in various parts of the country.

Thousands of people are currently displaced from their homes, either by deliberate force or out of fear of sectarian violence. The ICRC has sent 2,500 food parcels, 5,000 blankets, 1,000 jerry cans and 1,000 hygiene kits to the Iraqi Red Crescent Society. Some of this aid has already been delivered to displaced families in Baghdad's Tarmiya neighbourhood and in Samarra. The rest will be distributed in future according to need. In addition, the ICRC is dispatching tents and blankets to displaced families who have sought refuge in Najaf.

Tents are soon to be delivered to people who have fled their homes owing to the military operation in Samarra. To cope with potential casualties, a medical kit covering the needs of 100 war-wounded people has been sent to Baghdad's medical authorities. A similar kit was delivered to Imam Ali Hospital, in Sadr City, on 13 March following three successive car bombs that killed or injured scores of people.

 For further information, please contact:  

 Dorothea Krimitsas, ICRC Geneva, tel. +41 22 730 25 90 or +41 79 251 93 18  

 Nada Doumani, ICRC Iraq, tel. + 962 65 52 39 94 or + 962 777 399 614