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Poland: ICRC president visits Warsaw

06-02-2008 News Release 08/24

Geneva/Warsaw (ICRC) – The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Jakob Kellenberger, is in Warsaw for talks with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Radoslaw Sikorski, and the Secretary of State at the Ministry of National Defence, Czeslaw Piatas.

Their discussions will focus on issues of interest to both Poland and the ICRC, including the humanitarian situation in Iraq, Afghanistan and Chad.

During his visit, Mr Kellenberger will also sign a protocol that will complete the process of making the archives of the International Tracing Service (ITS) accessible to the public. The ITS, located in Bad Arolsen, Germany, is run by the ICRC and manages historical records concerning victims of Nazi persecution from 1933 to 1945. Poland currently holds the presidency of the International Commission for the International Tracing Service, which comprises 11 member States. Founded in 1948, the ITS'records became accessible to historical researchers and other interested members of the public in November 2007, following a decision by the International Commission. Previously, information in the archives was only released to the victims of Nazi persecution and their families.

  For further information, please contact:
  Zoltan Toth, ICRC Budapest, tel: +36 12 12 1146 or +36 20 249 99 86
  Anna Nelson, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 79 217 32 64
  For more information on the International Tracing Service, please visit: