ICRC media brief June 2013
Advance notice of ICRC activities and events, plus information on new footage, films and photos.
Central African Republic: Following recent events in the Central African Republic, the ICRC is working to improve the situation of communities affected by the disruption of basic public services and by the destruction that has occurred. A TV news cut will be released in mid-June covering the situation of displaced people in the bush, disrupted access to health care in some parts of the country, airlifted medical evacuation of people wounded in the fighting, and the distribution of food and seed ahead of the rainy season. Read a summary of our latest activities in the Central African Republic. For further information, please contact Marie-Servane Desjonquères, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 79 536 92 58.
Democratic Republic of the Congo: Since fighting with heavy weapons resumed around 20 May barely 10 kilometres north-west of Goma, ICRC personnel in the city have been working around the clock to provide essential goods for displaced people in the area, elsewhere in the province and in South Kivu. An update on the situation and on our activities will be published, together with a video clip on our work with victims of sexual violence, before the end of the month. For further information, please contact Marie-Servane Desjonquères, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 79 536 92 58.
Ethiopia: The ICRC continues to help vulnerable people in the country, in particular those who are detained, disabled or internally displaced. An update on the main activities carried out during the first half of the year will be published, with accompanying photographs, by the end of June. For further information, please contact Jean-Yves Clémenzo, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 22 71 or on +41 79 217 32 17.
Burkina Faso: As a consequence of the crisis in Mali, Burkina Faso is hosting tens of thousands of refugees. The influx has exacerbated already difficult living conditions in the area, which has been suffering from desertification. The ICRC and the Burkinabé Red Cross Society, after having distributed household essentials to refugee families, are now going to distribute food to around 10,000 residents of the north of the country. An interview with the ICRC's head of office in Ouagadougou and a news release will be published on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Wolde-Gabriel Saugeron, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 31 49 or +41 79 244 64 05.
Senegal: From its regional delegation in Dakar, the ICRC assists people adversely affected by violence in the Senegalese territory of Casamance and in Guinea-Bissau. In an interview, the ICRC's water and sanitation coordinator for the region will explain what is being done to improve access to safe drinking water. A news release on the re-opening of a health centre in São Domingos (northern Guinea-Bissau), fully renovated by the ICRC, will also be issued. Both items will be posted on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Wolde-Gabriel Saugeron, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 31 49 or +41 79 244 64 05.
Somalia: Despite some improvement in the situation in Somalia, significant needs remain. People have limited access to basic services. To prevent new emergencies, the ICRC is striving to boost sources of income by distributing vegetable, fodder and staple seed, supplying fertilizer, improving irrigation of cultivated land, and providing ploughing services. Read more about the ICRC's efforts to help communities improve their ability to face hard times in an operational update to be issued by mid-June. An interactive map of ICRC activities in Somalia will also be published. For further information, please contact Jean-Yves Clémenzo, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 22 71 or on +41 79 217 32 17.
Syria: Our update on the latest developments in the humanitarian situation and on our response will be published on www.icrc.org at the beginning of June. Regular updates on Syria will be available on www.icrc.org and on Twitter, @ICRC. For further information, please contact Dibeh Fakhr, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 37 23 or +41 79 447 37 26.
Israel and the occupied territories: The ICRC helps families from Gaza to visit relatives detained in Israel. Recently, children have been allowed to take part in the visits for the first time since 2007. A web clip illustrating a recent visit of children to their detained father as well as an update on the situation and our activities for the first half of the year will be posted on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Dibeh Fakhr, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 37 23 or +41 79 447 37 26.
Iran: A photo exhibition celebrating the ICRC's 150th anniversary will take place in Tehran, and an accompanying news release will be posted on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Dibeh Fakhr, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 37 23 or +41 79 447 37 26.
Yemen: In an interview to be posted on www.icrc.org, Daniel Mac Sweeny, an ICRC delegate in charge of visits to detainees in Yemen, talks about the challenges and opportunities he encounters in his work. A photo gallery illustrating the ICRC's efforts to repair water facilities and bring clean water to millions of people throughout the country will also be posted on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Dibeh Fakhr, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 37 23 or +41 79 447 37 26.
ASIA AND THE PACIFIC
Australia: A photo exhibition on "150 years of humanitarian action" will open in Canberra in June. The official launch, hosted jointly with the Swiss embassy, will be held at Australia's High Court on 26 June. A news release and photo gallery will be published on the same day. For further information, please contact Andrea Lunt, ICRC Canberra, at email@example.com or on +61 41 84 85 120.
Afghanistan: The ICRC will unveil its new telephone system that enables families of detainees to maintain contact with their relatives held at the Parwan detention facility in Bagram. A video clip showing how the telephone banks enable separated family members to maintain contact will be available on our website. Journalists are invited to the ICRC's delegation in Kabul to meet families using the facility and see how it works. For more information, please contact Robin Waudo, ICRC Kabul, on +93 700 282 719, or Philippe Stoll, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 31 40 or +41 79 536 92 49.
Bangladesh: A training course in first aid, mass-casualty management and water rescue techniques for police and public security forces will be organized by the ICRC from 8 to 14 June in Gazipur of Dhaka. International human rights standards require that, whenever the lawful use of force and firearms is unavoidable, law enforcement officials provide medical aid for injured persons. A news release will be issued and a photo gallery will be published on www.facebook.com/icrc. For further information, please contact Darko Jordanov, ICRC Dhaka, at email@example.com or on +88 0171 413 3858, or Onchita Shadman, ICRC Dhaka, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +88 0175 562 1456.
Myanmar: Inter-communal violence has erupted in Myanmar as the country undergoes political change. The ICRC is supporting victims of violence in Rakhine state. In January, it also resumed its visits to detainees after an eight-year break. Björn Rahm, in charge of the ICRC's visits to detainees in Myanmar, explains in an interview how the ICRC is stepping up the support it provides the authorities to enable them to improve conditions of detention. For further information, please contact Ewan Watson, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 33 45.
Philippines: A law enhancing respect for and protection of Red Cross personnel will enter into force in the Philippines this month. Known as the "Red Cross and Other Emblems Act of 2013," the law sets out rules for the use of the red cross, red crescent and red crystal emblems and stipulates penalties for misuse. A news release and Facebook gallery will be published to promote awareness of this new law. For further information, please contact Cynthia Lee, ICRC Manila, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +639 18 907 2125, or Ewan Watson, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 33 45.
Colombia: In June, the ICRC will post on www.icrc.org the English translation of its Colombia annual report of activities for 2012 describing the impact of armed conflict on people in the different parts of the country where the organization is carrying out its work. The report includes personal accounts illustrating the humanitarian consequences of conflict and the ICRC's efforts to relieve people's suffering and restore their dignity. For further information, please contact Alexis Heeb, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 37 72.
ICRC Annual Report: President Peter Maurer will unveil the ICRC's Annual Report at a press conference on 21 June at the organization's headquarters in Geneva. More information will follow as soon as available. The Annual Report provides a detailed overview of ICRC activities worldwide. A news release, facts and figures, and a photo selection will be made available on www.icrc.org. For further information, please contact Alexis Heeb, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 37 72.
New technologies: In the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia, which has been hit by severe drought in the past, the ICRC is using smartphones, USB sticks and software to help the authorities improve their monitoring of wells and water levels so as to be better prepared in the event of natural disaster. A feature story with photographs will be published on 5 June. For further information, please contact Jean-Yves Clémenzo, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 22 71 or on +41 79 217 32 17.
Arms Trade Treaty: The signing ceremony of the Arms Trade Treaty took place in New York on 3 June. Read the statement by ICRC Vice-President Christine Beerli. To know why the ICRC is calling for all States to sign, ratify and implement the treaty as soon as possible, watch our film "Arms Trade Treaty – keeping the promise." And follow us on Twitter and Facebook. For further information, please contact Claire Kaplun, ICRC Geneva, at email@example.com or on +41 22 730 33 55 or +41 22 79 244 64 63.
International Day in Support of Victims of Torture (26 June): The ICRC is reaffirming its strong commitment to the fight against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. Read the interview to be posted on www.icrc.org ahead of the International Day. For further information, please contact Dorothea Krimitsas, ICRC Geneva, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +41 22 730 25 90.
DISCOVER MORE ABOUT THE ICRC
ICRC website: www.icrc.org
ICRC media room: www.icrc.org/eng/media-room/index.jsp
ICRC video newsroom: www.icrcvideonewsroom.org
ICRC photo collection: www.icrc.org/eng/resources/photos/index.jsp
Media contacts: www.icrc.org/eng/who-we-are/contacts/index.jsp