Tunis hosts MENA Red Cross Red Crescent Consultative Meeting

Publié: 28 février 2014 19:48 CET

By Raefah Makki, IFRC

Leaders from the Red Cross Red Crescent Societies in Middle East and North Africa gathered from 24-25 February in Tunis, Tunisia, to review the current humanitarian situation and reinforce a better collective humanitarian work in the region.

Representatives from 17 MENA National Societies have discussed for two days the current operations and activities as well as a number of common issues and challenges facing the work of the Red Cross Red Crescent National Societies in the region.

“This meeting gives us an opportunity to review the current humanitarian context to strengthen preparedness and response capacities of the National Societies” said Elias Ghanem, Director of IFRC Middle East and North Africa Zone. “In Sydney, we committed to supporting the MENA youth network, and today we are putting this commitment into action as we decided in this meeting to consolidate this network. We believe this will enhance the role of our youth and volunteers in promoting the culture of peace and non-violence in our region”, Ghanem added.

The consultative meeting comes at a very critical moment for the region where almost all the National Societies are involved in responding to big emergencies especially the Syria crisis. The participants have emphasized the need to strengthen the joint efforts and agreed on the importance of the complementary role that each National Society is delivering in support to the people in need.

During the meeting, National Societies have agreed to establish three oversight and advisory groups to enhance the areas of disaster management, National Society development and humanitarian diplomacy. National Societies elected amongst themselves the chair for each committee to coordinate the efforts of the group and follow up on the implementation of the recommendations.

Members of the advisory groups elected:

  • Disaster Management, chaired by Kuwait Red Crescent includes: Iranian Red Crescent, Lebanese Red Cross, Moroccan Red Crescent, Qatar Red Crescent and Saudi Red Crescent Authority.
  • National Society Development, chaired by Tunisian Red Crescent includes: Algerian Red Crescent, Bahrain Red Crescent, Libyan Red Crescent, and Yemen Red Crescent.
  • Humanitarian Diplomacy, chaired by Iraqi Red Crescent includes: Egyptian Red Crescent, Jordan Red Crescent, Palestinian Red Crescent, and Syrian Arab Red Crescent.

National Societies' leaders have also recognized the role of youth in the region and have decided to give full support to activate their network. The leaders have also committed to empower the youth in their respective countries and work effectively on providing them with a relevant and healthy environment that will ensure their protection and safety.