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The ICRC in Myanmar

Insein prison. Detainee writing a Red Cross message.

The ICRC established a permanent presence in Myanmar in 1986. Since January 2013 it has been gradually expanding its activities in the country, providing vital humanitarian assistance to people affected by intercommunal violence in Rakhine State and armed conflict in the northeast of the country. It works to improve access to health-care services and clean water, and to restore livelihoods. The organization also visits places of detention throughout Myanmar and maintains a regular dialogue with the authorities on detainee welfare issues. Many of its programmes in support of needy communities are carried out jointly with the Myanmar Red Cross. Read full overview

Facts and Figures

From January to June 2014, the ICRC:

  • made 21 visits to 17 places of detention; improved the living conditions of 16,500 detainees by rehabilitating water supply, sanitation, kitchen and medical facilities in 11 prisons;
  • enabled more than 500 detainees to stay in touch with family members by exchanging Red Cross messages, and arranged nearly 80 visits between detainees and their relatives living far away;
  • trained more than 80 doctors, 90 midwives and 240 nurses in a range of medical activities, including primary trauma care;
  • rehabilitated water supply, sanitation and waste management facilities in 12 medical facilities in Myanmar and supplied them with medicines and medical consumable items;
  • provided 1,250 disabled persons with artificial limbs from two ICRC-supported physical rehabilitation centres;
  • assisted nearly 50,000 people with relief items and agricultural programs, and by helping them establish income-generating family businesses through grants and cash-for-work programmes, vocational training and provision of materials, such as fishing nets, canoes, trishaw bicycles, and grocery items;
  • briefed more than 1,000 people, including weapon bearers and religious leaders, on the work of the Movement, international humanitarian law and human rights law;
  • supported the Myanmar Red Cross in training staff and volunteers, including first aiders and emergency responders.