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…
PHILIPPINES: Last week a magnitude 6.9 earthquake hit western Visayas and some parts of northern Mindanao in the Philippines, claiming at least 22 lives with a further 71 people missing and 52 injured. Within hours of the earthquake the Philippine Red Cross, with the support of the IFRC, deployed 500 food packs, 1,000 bottles of drinking water, 1,000 sleeping mats, 1,000 blankets, 500 jerry cans, 30 tents and one mobile warehouse to serve as the temporary hospital.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA: Early this month a ferry carrying at least 560 passengers sank off the north coast of Papua New Guinea. Two weeks later, over 180 people were still missing with authorities believing the death toll could reach at least 200. Staff and volunteers of the Papua New Guinea Red Cross Society have been at the scene of the disaster since the accident occurred, offering counseling to relatives of the passengers waiting anxiously on shore and carrying out small distributions of emergency relief supplies.
SYRIA: Relief efforts continue in Syria as the violence escalates. Over the weekend Syrian Arab Red Crescent convoys reached the cities of Homs and Bloudan, providing much needed food, medical supplies, blankets, and hygiene consumables to thousands of people. The Syrian Red Crescent and the ICRC are planning further missions to continue providing humanitarian aid to people affected by the unrest.
BANGLADESH: Throughout the last decade, the ICRC has been working with the Bangladesh Red Crescent Society to promote international humanitarian law to authorities in Bangladesh. Last week deans and department heads of 35 public and private universities in Bangladesh met to discuss the inclusion of international humanitarian law in their curricula. Additionally, this week the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), an anti-crime force, is participating in an ICRC training course on humanitarian principles and international human rights law in domestic legislation.
Survivors of the 6.9 earthquake in the Philippines receiving relief support. Philippine Red Cross