Philippines: Helping people affected by conflict and the pandemic
A snapshot of ICRC response in the Philippines in 2020.
Article 18 February 2021 Philippines
The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in major health and economic challenges for millions of Filipinos in the last year, but the effects were particularly burdensome to people displaced or affected by internal armed conflicts and situations of violence.
In response to these humanitarian concerns, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) immediately focused on supporting the COVID-19 response of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) in Mindanao; and the Philippine government’s efforts to reduce the virus’ spread in congested detention facilities and in conflict zones. It provided trainings on infection prevention and control, management of the dead, and mental health, for frontliners. The ICRC also assisted those who were most economically impacted on by the pandemic and conflict, such as displaced people, families of missing persons and persons with disabilities.
When field trips resumed after COVID-related movement restrictions were eased, the ICRC restarted projects to enhance water, sanitation and access to education for conflict-affected communities, as well as livelihood and cash-for-work programs, often in cooperation with PRC. Dialogue on respect for international humanitarian law, or the law of armed conflict, continued with national authorities and weapons bearers, including state and non-state forces.
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