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Sudan: ICRC president asks for support at highest level to help obtain release of kidnapped delegate

09-02-2010 News Release 10/14

Khartoum/Geneva (ICRC) – The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Jakob Kellenberger, met in Khartoum today with the president of Sudan, Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir, to discuss efforts to secure the prompt release of ICRC staff member Gauthier Lefèvre, who has been held hostage in Darfur for 110 days.

" President Al Bashir has confirmed to me that his government is fully committed to do everything it can to ensure Mr Lefèvre's safety, and to secure his speedy release, " Mr Kellenberger said after the meeting. He added his thanks for efforts undertaken by the Sudanese government to secure the release of ICRC delegate Laurent Maurice, freed last Saturday after 89 days in captivity.

The ICRC has restricted its movements and reduced its field presence in eastern Chad and Darfur since the kidnappings. It is nevertheless maintaining its support for primary health-care centres as well as essential services that no one else can provide, such as the work it carries out in Gereida Camp, South Darfur, in one of the biggest camps for internally displaced people (IDPs).

  For further information, please contact:
  Anna Schaaf, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 22 71 or +41 79 217 32 17
  Aleksandra Matijevic Mosimann, ICRC Khartoum, tel: +249 9 12 170 576
  Saleh Dabbakeh, ICRC Khartoum, tel: +249 9 12 137 764