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Eritrea/Ethiopia: 390 civilians repatriated

26-01-2007 News Release

A total of 372 civilians have been repatriated from Eritrea to Ethiopia under the auspices of the ICRC.

The following was issued as a press release by the ICRC delegation in Asmara on 26 January 2007

Amongst those repatriated to rejoin their families were 14 unaccompanied minors and 1 medical case. In the same operation, 18 civilians were repatriated from Ethiopia to Eritrea. Among them were 13 unaccompanied minors, 1 elderly person and 1 medical case.

Acting in its capacity as a neutral and independent intermediary, the ICRC carried out this repatriation with the cooperation of the authorities. ICRC delegates based in Eritrea and an ambulance team of the Eritrean Red Cross accompanied the civilians going to Ethiopia on the first part of their journey from Asmara, Eritrea's capital, to the border. At the crossing point at Mereb River, located between the towns of Adi Quala in Eritrea and Rama in Ethiopia, the group was met by ICRC delegates based in Ethiopia, before being placed in the care of the Ethiopian authorities.

Likewise, ICRC delegates based in Ethiopia accompanied the civilians going to Eritrea to the border, where they were met by ICRC delegates based in Eritrea before being placed in the care of the Eritrean authorities.

The ICRC has assisted people affected by the 1998-2000 armed conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea regarding their repatriation since June 2000 and strives to ensure compliance with the rules and principles of international humanitarian law; in particular, the Geneva Conventions.

 For further information, please contact:  

 Catherine Deman, ICRC Asmara, +  +2911 181 164