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Cambodia: ICRC hands over tracing files to Cambodian Red Cross

14-12-2009 News Release 09/250

Phnom Penh/Geneva (ICRC) – The vice-president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Christine Beerli, today handed over digitized tracing files on half a million people to the Cambodian Red Cross during a ceremony in Phnom Penh.

Ms Beerli is taking part in a series of events commemorating 30 years of ICRC presence in Cambodia and meeting His Majesty Norodom Sihamoni, the king of Cambodia. She will also hold talks with prime minister Techo Hun Sen and other government officials.

The files the ICRC has handed over to the Cambodian Red Cross contain details of people separated from their loved ones by war since 1975. " Over 200,000 people have asked the ICRC for information about their relatives and almost half of them have been reunited with their families. In many cases, the ICRC was able to re-establish contact between family members, " said Ms Beerli. " We hope that these files will enable the Cambodian Red Cross to continue helping families shed light on the fate of missing relatives.”

The ICRC supports physical rehabilitation services that benefit thousands of Cambodians each year and works closely with the Cambodian Red Cross, particularly to promote international humanitarian law and humanitarian principles. The ICRC also visits detainees and supports Cambodian authorities in their efforts to improve sanitation in places of detention.

For more information, please contact:
  Eman Mo'Ankar, ICRC Bangkok, tel: +668 1950 1270
  Carla Haddad Mardini, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 79 217 32 26
  or see our operational update, web interview, film and timeline with photos