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The ICRC regional delegation in Nairobi

26-03-2012 Overview

The ICRC regional delegation in Nairobi promotes international humanitarian law (IHL) and carries out humanitarian activities in Kenya, Djibouti and Tanzania. It is an important logistical centre for ICRC operations in Somalia and in the Great Lakes region. From there, the ICRC protects and assists people displaced or affected by armed conflicts.

Second-largest ICRC logistics facility in the world

The ICRC Nairobi delegation was set up in Kenya in 1973. It monitors the humanitarian situation in Kenya, Tanzania and Djibouti. Kenya’s geographical position makes it an ideal base for the ICRC’s activities in East Africa and the surrounding regions as there are plane connections to all parts of the world, transport by road to many of the neighbouring countries, and the proximity of the port of Mombassa. The regional delegation is therefore home of the second-largest ICRC logistics facility in the world.

Promoting international humanitarian law

Through annual events, the delegation provides training on IHL to the armed forces in the region. In order to increase the study of IHL and to encourage research within academic circles, the delegation conducts an annual essay competition and a national moot court competition. The Pan African competition on IHL and humanitarian issues, which takes place in Arusha, Tanzania, brings together students from Anglophone countries on the continent.

Helping detainees and restoring family links

Detention visits are conducted for prisoners of war and civil detainees in Djibouti to ensure that their rights are respected. The ICRC jointly with the National Societies, facilitates the restoration of family links through Red Cross messages and initial phone contacts for refugees and immigrants in Kenya, Tanzania and Djibouti. Additionally, unaccompanied minors and children are reunited with their families.

Supporting National Societies

National Societies in the region receive a mix of ICRC funds, goods, expertise and logistics back-up to build their capacities in relief assistance, restoration of family links, water and habitat, economic security and communication programmes. The following programmes are implemented through this activity-oriented support.

The ICRC funds and implements water projects jointly with the Kenyan Red Cross Society (KRCS) thus improving access to clean and safe drinking water. The ICRC also works with the Gabode Prison in Djibouti to ensure access to clean and safe water. In order to enable communities whose livelihoods are affected by situations of violence in Kenya, the ICRC, working jointly with KRCS, assists them through various activities such as cash for work, provision of seeds and tools, destocking in times of drought (see feature on the subject) and animal health services.