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Colombia: Emergency aid for displaced people in Atrato region

29-08-2002 News Release 02/35

Last week the ICRC provided emergency humanitarian aid for 1,766 people who had fled to Turbo, Riosucio and Montaño following armed clashes between members of the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) and the ACCU (Peasant Self-Defence Force of Córdoba and Urabá) in the Truandó and Chintadó river basin in western Colombia.

A total of 3,260 parcels were distributed to 390 families sheltering along the Atrato river, who had previously received assistance under the ICRC's overall programme for displaced persons in the country.

An ICRC mobile health team is also active in the region, caring for civilians whose access to public health services has been cut off by the fighting. In the first six months of 2002, the team provided some 4,000 people with medical and dental consultations and vaccinations. It also carried out disease-control, health and sanitation activities.

ICRC delegates regularly monitor the situation of civilians in this region, where the fighting began to escalate in early 2002. They also maintain contacts with all the parties to the conflict in order to promote compliance with the rules of international humanitarian law.