Statement on detention of IRC staff member in Iraq

Around midnight on April 6, Fadi Fadel, who works for the International Rescue Committee in Najaf, was taken from the IRC staff residence by members of a local militia.
He has since been incorrectly identified in media reports as an Arab Israeli.

Mr. Fadel, 33, is a Syrian-born Canadian citizen who manages a UNICEF-funded program that provides humanitarian assistance for vulnerable children and youth in southern Iraq. These activities have included the rehabilitation of a youth center in Al Ansar, the distribution of wheelchairs to injured children in Najaf and support to local schools.

Mr. Fadel is a committed humanitarian aid worker who is in Iraq solely to assist conflict-affected Iraqi communities. On humanitarian grounds, we appeal to his captors to release him unharmed.