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…
JAPAN: On March 11th, 2011, Japan faced a magnitude 9.0 earthquake that resulted in a devastating tsunami, nuclear disaster, and several powerful aftershocks. Nearly 16,000 have been confirmed dead, with several thousand people remaining missing, and over 125,000 buildings were damaged or destroyed. To mark a year since this tragedy, the IFRC has produced a series of reports looking at what the Japanese Red Cross Society continues to do, including addressing the psychosocial stress survivors face, helping devastated communities rebuild, and assisting those affected by the nuclear exclusion zone.
SYRIA: In Syria, the ICRC and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent have teams assisting people in new areas around the violence stricken city of Homs. These teams are providing first aid and medical care where needed, while distributing food, blankets and hygiene items to residents and to people who fled Baba Amr. The priority for the ICRC and Syrian Arab Red Crescent is to continue assisting people affected by the violence.
UNITED KINGDOM: Land Rover, in partnership with the IFRC, has launched a 50-day, 8,000 mile trek from its factory in Birmingham (UK) to Beijing (China) to support a massive water and sanitation project in Uganda. The project aims to provide clean water and sanitation for 45,000 people. Four Land Rover vehicles have set off, and will be navigating through a dozen countries across Europe and Central Asia before arriving in China’s capital on April 23rd.
HONG KONG (CHINA): Later this week more than 60 law students and scholars representing 20 universities from Asia and the Pacific will participate in the 10th Red Cross International Humanitarian Law Moot-Court Competition in Hong Kong. The teams, from Japan, Australia, Thailand, China and elsewhere, will have their knowledge of international humanitarian law tested by a panel of distinguished judges, lawyers and other legal experts. The moot court, organized by the ICRC and Hong Kong Red Cross, shows how international humanitarian law, which deals with how wars are waged, can ensure respect for human life and dignity.
A year after a devastating tsunami hit Otsuchi, Japan, much of the debris has now been cleared with only the foundations left of many of the houses.