Iraq

Iraq crisis focus of humanitarian meeting in Geneva

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Bern, February 6, 2003 - Switzerland has called a international humanitarian meeting for February 15-16 in Geneva to discuss the crisis in Iraq. Leading humanitarian representatives from 45 international organizations and states concerned about the development of the humanitarian situation in and around Iraq are invited to attend the Humanitarian Meeting Iraq.
Delegates are to focus on practical questions for humanitarian relief in Iraq in the event that the crisis breaks out into open hostilities. Issues such as logistics and resources are on the agenda, as well as an exchange of information on existing and planned humanitarian measures by individual organizations and states and the international coordination of humanitarian activities.

The Swiss foreign minister, Micheline Calmy-Rey, who announced the two-day Humanitarian Meeting Iraq at the beginning of this week, will open the meeting at the Geneva International Conference Center (CICG) on February 15th.

The SDC, which is organizing the event, has invited 15 international organizations to attend,among them are UN agencies, the ICRC and the IFRC, and 30 countries - including Iraq's neighbours, the permanent members of the UN Security Council, the current presidencyof the UN Security Council (Germany),the presidency of the European Union (Greece) and countries in the Geneva Humanitarian Liaison Working Group.

For further information contact Joachim Ahrens, SDC spokesman, Tel. 031-322 35 59