North Caucasus and South of Russia: December 2002
03-01-2003 Operational Update
Bombing of civilians in Grozny – 2003 Emergency Appeal and Plan of Action for Russia – Activities in Chechnya – Humanity and War exhibition in Budennovsk
The ICRC condemned the attack of 27 December 2002 on the Chechen Government headquarters in Grozny, expressing its deep concern. The bombing killed over 70 people and wounded another 150. Most of the victims were civilians. Indiscriminate attacks on civilians are a violation of the most basic principles of international humanitarian law. The ICRC provided city hospitals with medicines and other emergency supplies.
On 10 December 2002 , the ICRC launched its worldwide Emergency Appeal for 2003 and its Plan of Action for the Russian Federation.
During 2003, the ICRC will expand its activities to include rehabilitation, while continuing to provide emergency response. The organization will also continue to support the federal and local authorities, to ensure that people have access to essential services at a price they can afford. This will involve doubling ICRC support for surgery in hospitals and carrying out further renovation of laboratories, blood banks and training facilities. The ICRC will also be stepping up water and sanitation programs.
The ICRC is one of a limited number of humanitarian organizations operating in the Chechen Republic. Where security and access conditions permit, the ICRC plans to concentrate more of its efforts on the area, maintaining economic security through various forms of support. The ICRC will be supplying food and other goods to individual households, applying social and economic criteria to identify those hardest hit by the Chechnya situation. As part of its protection programmes, the ICRC will continue to visit people held in connection with the situation in Chechnya, and will discuss respect for the civilian population and general protection questions with the authorities.
The ICRC travelling exhibition Humanity and War was in Budennovsk from 3 to 21 December. Some 3,000 people attended the exhibition, aimed at promoting the basic principles of international humanitarian law, the ICRC and the Red Cross movement.