Occupied Palestinian territory: IFRC Secretary General praises work of Red Crescent and calls for greater investment in rebuilding Gaza

Published: 11 June 2015

Ramallah/Geneva – 11 June - The Secretary General of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Elhadj As Sy, has praised the work of the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) and called for renewed international assistance to support recovery efforts in Gaza.

“I was impressed to see the commitment and professionalism of the Palestine Red Crescent, its volunteers and staff, to deliver assistance to vulnerable communities right across oPt,” he said. “Their work, their dedication to our Fundamental Principles, and their courage in the face of complex operating conditions lifts our entire Movement.”

Speaking at the end of his four day visit to the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), Mr Sy spoke also of the need for increased investment and partnerships to rebuild Gaza.

“I am concerned about the level of destruction still evident in Gaza, and the lack of reconstruction almost a year on from the end of the conflict,” Mr Sy said. “I saw many communities in Gaza that are still recovering, many people still living under makeshift shelters where they are exposed to the elements, and unable to begin the task of rebuilding what they have lost.

“The Palestine Red Crescent is there, working alongside communities, helping them to address their needs, to become better prepared for future challenges and in the process, to become more resilient. But they, and their partners within the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and beyond, need support. We call on all stakeholders to support the people of Gaza to rebuild their homes and their lives,” he said.

Mr Sy visited PRCS facilities in Gaza, Hebron and East Jerusalem. In Gaza, he visited a PRCS psychosocial project on the outskirts of Khan Younis where Red Crescent volunteers provide children with a safe space to play and to deal with the challenges they have faced. He visited PRCS’ Al Quds and AL Amal hospitals, and inaugurated a violence prevention course.

In Hebron, he visited the Al-Raja’a rehabilitation centre, where PRCS volunteers and staff care for disabled children. He also visited the Hebron Hospital where the Red Crescent runs one of the few paediatric centres in oPt. In East Jerusalem, he helped inaugurate five new ambulances donated to the PRCS by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

“I was proud to see the work of the Red Crescent. I salute the leadership of PRCS President Dr. Younis Al Khatib, and the tireless work of PRCS volunteers. The IFRC stands alongside PRCS as they continue to support and bring about hope to the most vulnerable.”



For further information, please contact:

In Ramallah:

Amelia Marzal, Federation Representative
Mobile: +972 59 823 58 88+972 59 823 58 88 | Email:amelia.marzal@ifrc.org

In Beirut:

Soraya Dali-Balta, Communications Officer, IFRC
Email: soraya.dalibalta@ifrc.org ¦ Mobile: +961 79 300439+961 79 300439

In Geneva:

Benoit Matsha-Carpentier, Team Leader, Public Communications and Outreach, IFRC 
Email: benoit.carpentier@ifrc.org ¦ Mobile: +41 79 213 24 13+41 79 213 24 13