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China: ICRC opens regional delegation in Beijing

20-07-2005 News Release 05/41

Geneva/Beijing (ICRC) – The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Jakob Kellenberger, held talks in Beijing today with Chinese president Hu Jintao.

 
© ICRC / Natalie Behring 
 
  ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger shaking hands with China's Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing. At left: Reto Meister, ICRC Delegate-General for Asia and Pacific with Mme Su Juxiang, Vice-President of the Chinese Red Cross.    
     
 
 
© ICRC / Natalie Behring 
 
  ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger and China's Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing sign the agreement for the new delegation.    
     
 
 
© ICRC / Natalie Behring 
 
  Chinese Vice-Minister of Foreign affairs Shen Guofang (right) and the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross Jakob Kellenberger unveil a plaque at an event celebrating the establishment of an ICRC regional delegation for east Asia in Beijing.    
     

 
© ICRC / Natalie Behring 
 
  ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger and Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing toast the agreement for the new delegation    
      

The meeting followed the signing of an agreement earlier in the day with foreign minister Li Zhaoxing on the establishment of an ICRC regional delegation for east Asia in Beijing. The ICRC president also met Mrs Peng Peiyun, the president of the Red Cross Society of China, and high ranking officers of the People's Liberation Army.

Discussions between Mr Kellenberger and President Hu Jintao focused on the challenges the ICRC faces in armed conflicts around the world and the relevance of international humanitarian law in today's contexts. The meeting also laid the groundwork for future cooperation between the ICRC and China in the humanitarian field.

The new regional delegation in Beijing will boost the ICRC’s work in east Asia and will enable more sustained activity in the People's Republic of China, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea and Mongolia.

Currently, the ICRC’s main activities in the region are the promotion and implementation of international humanitarian law and cooperation with national Red Cross societies. This includes helping the two Red Cross Societies on the Korean peninsula to improve the situation of families separated since the Korean War. The ICRC also runs limb-fitting centres in China's Yunnan Province and in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

The organization is currently developing its Chinese-language website ( www.icrc.org/chi ) and publications, with the aim of fostering interest in and understanding of humanitarian issues and international humanitari an law amongst Chinese-speakers.

High resolution photos are available from our website attached to the press release.

 For further information, please contact:  

 Ian Piper, ICRC Geneva, +41 22 730 2063 or +41 79 217 3216  

 Ren Hao (ICRC Beijing) +86 138 010 51420