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United States: ICRC president completes visit to Washington

11-04-2013 News Release 13/68

Geneva/Washington D.C. (ICRC) – The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Peter Maurer, has completed a four-day official visit to Washington.

Mr Maurer met at the White House with President Barack Obama and other senior officials. In addition, the ICRC president met with Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency John Brennan, Deputy Secretary of State William Burns, and Deputy Attorney General James Cole. Mr Maurer also met with senior members of the U.S. Congress and the leadership of the American Red Cross.

A focus of Mr Maurer's visit was detention-related matters. "The United States, including its Congress, must urgently find a way to resolve all pending humanitarian, legal and policy issues relating to the detention of persons held at Guantanamo Bay, including those deemed to no longer represent a threat that justifies their continued detention there," said Mr Maurer.

"We enjoy a robust and multi-faceted dialogue with the United States, and my visit was an opportunity to discuss issues and contexts of mutual concern such as Syria and Afghanistan," said Mr Maurer. "The United States values the mandate, positions and input of the ICRC and I am confident that this interaction will continue to bring concrete results, notably in terms of implementation of and respect for international humanitarian law in current and future battlefields."


For further information, please contact:
Simon Schorno, ICRC Washington, tel: +1 202 361 1566
Alexis Heeb, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 37 72 or +41 79 218 76 10
Carla Haddad Mardini, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 24 05 or +41 79 217 32 26