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Comoros: Aid for victims of violence

10-09-1997 News Release 97/35

Following last week's clashes on the island of Anjouan in the Comoros archipelago, an ICRC delegate travelled there with members of the Comoran Red Crescent to deliver urgently needed medical supplies, tents and cooking sets, and to make an on-the-spot assessment of the population's needs. The ICRC has also contacted the local authorities with a view to gaining access to all government soldiers (reportedly over 80) taken prisoner during the unrest, and visiting them in accordance with the organization's customary working procedures.

Since the fighting on Anjouan broke out a week ago, 50 Red Crescent volunteers have been giving first aid to the wounded and attempting to locate people reported missing. The local Red Crescent is also using its radio communication network to pass family messages between the main island, Grande Comore, and the secessionist islands of Anjouan and Moheli, thus reassuring family members and helping them to restore contact with their relatives.

According to the latest figures, at least 40 people were killed and 25 injured in the clashes.