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29 Aug 2018 description

Long after the fighting ends, families continue to search for loved ones who have gone missing during a conflict. They live in limbo not knowing if their relative is alive or dead.

In Sri Lanka, it has been nine years since the conflict ended. But for the families of missing people, the quest for their loved ones, continues. What these families want to know most is the fate and whereabouts of their missing relatives.

14 Feb 2018 description

Countless people die during an armed conflict. Many are separated from their families and loved ones. There are others who go missing. The armed conflict in Sri Lanka between the Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam separated families. Mr Periyasamy Ramaiah never thought his family would be torn in two. Almost three decades later, when he had started to believe he would die before his family was reunited, the seemingly impossible happened.

14 Dec 2017 description

This factsheet provides a summary of the activities that the ICRC carries out for vulnerable migrants and their families in Asia. It explains our approach and describes what we, together with National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, do to help protect and assist migrants along migration routes in Asia.

11 Aug 2017 description

For more than 140 years, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has been visiting detainees worldwide with the aim of improving humane treatment and conditions of detention for all detainees.

In Sri Lanka, we have been visiting detainees since 1989. Visits were then carried out to detainees held in connection with the uprising of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna and the armed conflict. Nowadays, we visit all detainees in places of detention.

19 Aug 2016 description

Dear Reader,

In January this year, the ICRC shared with government authorities a comprehensive report with the findings of an assessment on the needs of families of missing people, together with recommendations on how to address these needs. The ICRC intends to make available soon, a public version of the report. The assessment was carried out between October 2014 and November 2015 in all districts of Sri Lanka, and involved individual interviews and focus group discussions with 395 families, including those of missing soldiers and policemen.

04 Aug 2016 description

Islamabad (ICRC) – Handling dead bodies with respect and dignity in emergencies is the theme of a five-day course currently being run by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Islamabad, Pakistan. The course has attracted emergency responders from Afghanistan, Ecuador, Indonesia, Iran, Lebanon, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Viet Nam who will benefit from national expertise.

25 Jul 2016 description

What happened to my relative? Answering this question is the top priority for familes of missing persons, according to a new ICRC report on the families of people who went missing during decades of armed conflict in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka missing persons report

The years that have passed since Sri Lanka's armed conflict ended in 2009 have brought little solace to the families of over 16,000 people whom ICRC records still show as "missing".

19 Jul 2016 description


Cover story

Bright ideas, local solutions

As humanitarians explore new technologies and innovation, how do they make sure these developments empower the people who need them most? A pilot project in two informal settlements in Kenya and South Africa offers some answers.

Phones, drones and beyond

07 Jan 2016 description

The latest newsletter from the ICRC delegation in Sri Lanka features a variety of articles, including updates on our work in the country, how we're addressing the needs of families of missing persons, and marking World First Aid Day.

29 Sep 2015 description

The ICRC's work in Sri Lanka focuses on supporting people still suffering the effects of the conflict between the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and the Sri Lankan government. We are visiting detainees, supporting the families of missing persons, training forensics personnel, supporting vulnerable people, ensuring safe water and sanitation and promoting international humanitarian law.

Visiting detainees

12 May 2015 description

The 2014 Annual report of the ICRC is an account of field activities conducted worldwide. Activities are part of the organization's mandate to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war, and to promote respect for international humanitarian law.

Facts and figures

26.2 million people had access to water and sanitation improved.
Read more on water and shelter.

9.12 million people were provided with basic aid such as food.
Read more on aid distribution.

11 May 2015 description

The latest newsletter of from our delegation in Sri Lanka features a variety of articles, including updates on our work, the launch of new programme, facts and figures on our activities from January to March 2015.

Table of content:


•The families of the missing need to know

•Sri Lanka to start a forensic anthropology and archaeology education programme

•A task force to address causes of overcrowding in Sri Lanka's prisons

•Mooting International Humanitarian Law in Hong Kong

31 Mar 2015 description

The ICRC's Director of Operations, Dominic Stillhart, recently concluded a five-day visit to Sri Lanka. During his time in the country Mr Stillhart met with a number of senior government officials, including the Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe and the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mangala Samaraweera. In these meetings he reiterated that the organization remains committed to their work in Sri Lanka and to providing assistance to vulnerable individuals, including detainees and families of missing persons.

20 Feb 2015 description

Table of content

  • Editorial
  • Remembering the Indian Ocean tsunami
  • Colombo hosts first regional legislative drafting workshop on International Humanitarian Law
  • Health care in Detention: An interview with the Colombo delegation's detention doctor
  • Discussing acts of terror and International Humanitarian Law
  • 25 years later - A personal journey through the ICRC in Sri Lanka
  • ICRC activities: Ocotober-December 2014
13 Oct 2014 description

A round-up of activities carried out by the ICRC in Sri Lanka.


  • Identifiying humanitarian needs of families of missing persons

  • Health Care in Danger: ensuring safer access

  • Sustainable solutions for vulnerables communities to have clean water

  • Sri Lanka hosts regional gathering on international humanitarian law

  • The role of forensics in humanitarian action

15 Jul 2014 description

In the north and east of Sri Lanka, households headed by women and persons who were disabled due to the conflict are among the vulnerable needing support to develop sustainable livelihoods. The ICRC is enabling them to start income-generating activities and develop appropriate skills.

14 May 2014 description

Annual Report for 2013: A strong response to complex crises

14-05-2014 News Release 14/81

26 Feb 2014 description

During a recent visit to Sri Lanka, Anthony Dalziel, the ICRC’s head of operations for South Asia, met government officials and discussed what could be done to help people affected by the consequences of the past conflict.

The conflict in Sri Lanka ended in 2009. How relevant is the ICRC’s work in the country now?

15 Jan 2014 description


  • Adding value to the country’s post-conflict humanitarian response

  • Sir John Kotelawala Defence University and ICRC conducts IHL training for the military

  • Helping integrate humanitarian principles into police training, doctrine and practices

  • Promoting IHL among academics and authorities authorities