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Sri Lanka: ICRC to close Mannar office at end of November

14-09-2010 News Release 10/170

Colombo (ICRC) – More than one year after the end of active hostilities in Sri Lanka, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has reviewed its operations in the country and decided to close its office in the Mannar district at the end of November 2010.

The ICRC's office in Vavuniya will maintain the organization's support for communities that are being settled in Mannar and its travel allowances for eligible families visiting detained relatives.

" The ICRC recognizes the lasting impact of armed conflict on people's lives and the importance of providing support in the early stages of recovery and reconstruction. It will continue to respond to the need for humanitarian aid, " said Paul Castella, head of the ICRC delegation in Colombo. " At the same time, the ICRC must bring its activities into line with the resources available while also taking into account the fact that Mannar is easily reached from Vavuniya. "

The ICRC has experience all over the world carrying out humanitarian activities in behalf of those suffering the effects of armed conflict after active hostilities have ended. In Sri Lanka, where it has been working without interruption since 1989, it will continue to perform its humanitarian tasks and remains prepared to support the authorities in their efforts to provide needed services.

  For further information, please contact:
  Sarasi Wijeratne, ICRC Colombo, tel: +94 11 250 33 46 or +94 773 1588 44