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Jordan hosts first ICRC regional meeting on restoring family links

By JT - Oct 05,2017 - Last updated at Oct 05,2017

A regional meeting co-organised by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Jordan Red Crescent Society concluded on Thursday, after two days of discussions related to the restoration of family links (Photo courtesy of ICRC)

AMMAN — A regional meeting co-organised by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Jordan Red Crescent Society concluded on Thursday, after two days of discussions related to the restoration of family links, according to a statement by the ICRC.

Held in Amman, the regional meeting was attended by 40 participants, including 22 from 13 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies from the Middle East and North Africa, and 18 from nine ICRC delegations.

Participants exchanged experiences, best practices, and lessons learnt,with the aim of strengthening cooperation on family links issues. They also took part in consultations on the new Restoring Family Links strategy for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement to be implemented as of 2019, the statement said.

“Behind every missing person or separated family, there are loved ones looking for answers, whether they are separated by conflict or natural disaster or migration. We must do our utmost to establish their whereabouts, restore contact between them and if need be reunite them,” said Juerg Montani, head of the ICRC delegation in Jordan. 

Mohammed Mitlek Al Hadid, president of the Jordan Red Crescent Society, noted: “In order to alleviate human suffering, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement must unify and intensify its efforts in the field of restoring family links. Through the use of modern technology we can reach out to people affected by conflicts, disasters or migration.”

Authorities have the primary responsibility, in accordance with international law, to protect family unity and prevent family separation, the statement said, noting that the global Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement network on Restoring Family Links plays a vital role in helping the authoritiesthrough its family links website, by addressing the needs of concerned family members.

Since January, the ICRC in Jordan provided 9,940 free-of-charge phone calls to Syrian refugees in Zaatari and Azraq camps, in order to help them re-establish and maintain contact with family members in Syria and elsewhere, in cooperation with the Jordan Red Crescent, according to the statement. 

 

The organisation also issued 78 travel documents to refugees, upon the request of the UNHCR and certain embassies, to help them resettle or rejoin their families in third countries, the statement concluded.

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HOW CAN THE ICRC BE TALKING ABOUT FAMILY LINKS WHEN IN FACT THEY ARE SITTING IN A COUNTRY WHERE FAMILIES ARE DIVIDED SIMPLE BECAUSE JORDANIAN WOMEN ARE MARRIED TO NON JORDANIAN MEN. IS THIS NOT THE BASIC FUNDAMENTAL OF A NUCLEAR FAMILY? ICRC SHOULD AND MUST SPEAK OUT AGAINST INTERNAL DISPLACEMENT BASED ON GENDER STRATIFICATION AND YET ONE OF THEIRS SITS AT THE HELM OF THE INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHT WING OF THE UNITED NATION.

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