Welcome to the Worldwide Wednesday Wrap-Up, in which we consolidate the international Red Cross and Red Crescent news into one list of bite-sized links for you. It’s a non-comprehensive sampling of the larger and/or more intriguing aspects of our global work…
ITALY: 250 Italian Red Cross staff and volunteers are taking part in the rescue and relief operation at the site of capsized liner Costa Concordia. The cruise ship hit rocks off Italy’s west coast on Friday night, killing at least 12 people and injuring 70. Volunteers have supplied more than 800 people with clothes, shoes, hygiene kits, transport to nearby hospitals, medicine and other materials.
NIGERIA: The ICRC is providing support for the Nigerian Red Cross to treat those injured in a recent wave of protests. A nationwide strike was called for January 9th by labor organizations to protest the withdrawal of fuel subsidies. Since the strike began, Nigerian Red Cross volunteers have provided first aid all over the country to more than 600 injured persons.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO: Heavy fighting has been raging in Shabunda territory of South Kivu province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Since January 5th, 27 injured people, including eight children, have been evacuated to various hospitals in Bukavu with support from the ICRC. The ICRC is continuing to supply medical supplies and is pressing the authorities and weapon bearers to respect and protect civilians.
SOMALIA: The ICRC has decided to temporarily suspend distribution of food and seed relief intended for 1.1 million people in urgent need after having been blocked by local authorities in parts of central and southern Somalia. Since a drought started in late 2010 the ICRC has distributed food rations to more than a million people and has provided agricultural support for over 100,000 farmers.
CHILE: On the first day of the new year hundreds in Chile were evacuated from dozens of forest fires that burned at least 57,000 acres. The Chilean Red Cross is currently assisting more that 50 families in shelters located in the communes of Quillon and Chillan.