Saudi Red Crescent Authority, IFRC vow increased cooperation in momentous Memorandum of Understanding

Published: 2 October 2014

Geneva/Beirut/Jeddah01 October 2014 The Saudi Red Crescent Authority (SRCA) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) signed on Wednesday a landmark Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to pave the way for stronger ties by expanding their existing cooperation on issues of common concern.

This step was motivated and guided by a common desire between the SRCA and the IFRC to promote human dignity based on shared values and the fundamental principles of the International Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. Through their new agreement, the SRCA and IFRC aim to exchange support, information and resources in support of different humanitarian and development priorities.

The signing of the MoU took place in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah in the presence of H.R.H Prince Faisal Bin Abdulla Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, the President of the SRCA, H.H. Prince Abdulla Bin Faisal Al Saud, the Director General of the International Affairs and Relief Department, IFRC Secretary General Mr Elhadj As Sy, IFRC Vice President for the Africa region Dr Abbas Gullet, IFRC Director for Middle-East and North Africa Mr Elias Ghanem, and Mr Mohamed Babiker, the IFRC Regional Representative for the Gulf.

The MoU underscores the necessity of cooperation and consultation between the IFRC and the SRCA to support humanitarian issues of common interests, and highlights the importance of effective communication and coordination between both bodies. SRCA and IFRC leaders also agreed in the MoU to hold joint activities with the aim of achieving common goals and to exchange information, documents and advice. Cooperation in technical support was also stressed to contribute to the missions and programs of both the IFRC and the SRCA.

The Saudi Red Crescent Authority has long been a leading supporter of IFRC activities and was elected in 2013 as member of the IFRC’s Governing Board. Seeking to empower National Societies to enable them to respond to humanitarian needs and calls in the most effective way, SRCA donated one million US dollars to the IFRC’s Digital Divide Program in 2012, thereby leading the way to strengthen National Societies’ modern information and communications technology (ICT) capacities around the world. The grant has allowed the Federation to plan and implement programs to help 21 National Societies develop their ICT aptitudes.

The Saudi Red Crescent Authority is a valuable partner in international assistance, contributing to improving the lives of millions in need. SRCA, which acts as an auxiliary body to the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, has a strong international presence with programs outside the Kingdom to respond to global emergencies and crises. In the Middle East region, the SRCA has been one of the first responders to ongoing crises and wars, particularly supporting vulnerable communities affected by the unrest in Syria, Gaza Strip and Iraq.

The SRCA was established in 1963 and has since gradually developed to cover five regions in the Kingdom through providing medical services and contributing to relief work inside the country, in addition to its significant role on the regional and the international levels. One of the tasks that are unique to the Saudi Red Crescent Authority is assisting pilgrims, providing on-the-spot first-aid and transferring urgent cases to the nearest health facilities during the Hajj period through professional and well equipped teams with air and fleet of ambulances.

About the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world’s largest volunteer-based humanitarian network, reaching 150 million people each year through our 189 member National Societies. Together, we act before, during and after disasters and health emergencies to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people. We do so with impartiality as to nationality, race, gender, religious beliefs, class and political opinions. For more information, please visit You can also connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.

For further information, please contact:

  • Raefah Makki, Senior Communications Officer, IFRC Beirut

Mobile:            +961 70 258225          Email:


  • Benoit Matsha-Carpentier, Team leader, public communications, IFRC Geneva

Mobile : +41 79 213 24 13      E-mail: