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Libya: ICRC teams join forces with Libyan doctors and nurses in east of country

06-03-2011 News Release 11/50

Geneva/Benghazi (ICRC) - On 6 March two ICRC medical teams, comprising in all 10 surgeons and nurses, joined forces with Libyan medical and surgical teams in the cities of Benghazi and Ajdabya who are treating people wounded in the fighting.

The first team was sent to Al Jalaa Hospital in Benghazi, which has received the bulk of the casualties since the onset of the crisis.

The second team was posted to Ajdabya Central Hospital, which has also received dozens injured in the clashes in and around the city. These steps were taken in coordination with the Libyan Red Crescent and the Benghazi Health Committee, after thorough discussions with all concerned.

"It's heart-warming to see the devotion of Libyan medical staff working to save the lives of the wounded," said Lena Netijaeff, an ICRC nurse on the spot. "Our aim is to support them in any way possible to cope with current and potential casualties," she added.

The ICRC teams comprise four specialists from the German Red Cross, who arrived in Benghazi two days ago, four specialists from the Norwegian Red Cross, who have been present in Benghazi for a week, and an ICRC doctor and nurse.

"Even though hospitals in Benghazi and nearby cities have coped so far with the influx of casualties, we are helping some of them replenish their emergency stocks in case the situation deteriorates," said Simon Brooks, ICRC representative in Benghazi. "Today, in cooperation with the Libyan Red Crescent, we also sent enough surgical supplies and equipment to treat 100 injured people in the west of the country."

In coordination with the Benghazi Health Committee and the Libyan Red Crescent, the ICRC's medical teams, headed by Dr Marco Baldan, held a surgical seminar for more than 70 Libyan doctors and nurses at Al Jalaa hospital on 5 and 6 March.

Since 25 February, the ICRC has been in close contact with the Libyan Red Crescent and the Benghazi Health Committee, and it has visited the main hospitals in Benghazi, Al-Bayda and Ajdabya to assess the situation and offer any support needed.


For further information, please contact:
Hicham Hassan (English, Arabic, French), ICRC Benghazi, tel: +20 1 87 42 43 44
Christian Cardon (English, French), ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 79 251 93 02