ICRC sets up shop in Libya.
The International Committee of the Red Cross was given authorization to establish a permanent office in Tripoli April 11. Yesterday a team of four staff specializing in health matters, detention-related activities and logistics arrived there.
“Now that our specialists have arrived, we will go back to Misrata and Zawiyah but we will also start working in other areas,” said Jean-Michel Monod, who heads the ICRC team in Tripoli. “We need to see and talk to those affected and respond directly to their needs. Having the support of all the parties will certainly help us to achieve this aim.”
Some key points from today’s ICRC Operations Update:
- Misrata: The ICRC ship that docked there on 8 April delivered enough medical supplies to treat 300 patients with weapon-related injuries. Together with Libyan Red Crescent personnel, ICRC staff toured the streets in Misrata to assess the need for humanitarian aid.
- ICRC staff also collected more than 180 “safe and well” messages from foreign nationals in Misrata and contacted their families abroad, with the help of Libyan Red Crescent volunteers, to give them news of their loved ones.
- Thousands of people have been displaced to the eastern towns of Tobruk, Daran, Al Beyda and Al Marj. On 14 April, the ICRC started distributing food and other items to 18,000 people in those towns in cooperation with the Libyan Red Crescent, the municipal councils and the Committee for Humanitarian Aid and Relief.
- The ICRC has provided the General Electricity Company of Libya and the Benghazi Water and Sewage Authority with basic supplies needed to repair the low-tension electricity network and the water network so that thousands of people will continue to have water and electricity.
- An assessment of weapon-contaminated areas in Benghazi, Baida and Ajdabiya has already been completed. Together with the Libyan Red Crescent, the ICRC is now starting an awareness-raising campaign to warn of the danger of unexploded ordnance. The ICRC also intends to send a specialized team to provide technical support for clearing the worst-affected areas.
- Efforts continue to assist refugees displaced on the borders of Tunisia and Egypt.