Kitt meets Red Cross Secretary-General and announces new funding for victims of Beslan tragedy and Hurricane Ivan
The Secretary General of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Mr. Markku Niskala, today met with the Minister for Development Cooperation and Human Rights, Mr. Tom Kitt TD, to discuss a wide range of current humanitarian issues and challenges, including the recent tragedy at Beslan, the destruction caused by Hurricane Ivan and the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Darfur, Sudan.
Following the meeting, Minister of State Kitt announced additional funding of €100,000 for the victims of the Beslan tragedy and funding of €200,000 to assist the IFRC appeal in meeting the needs of those in the Carribbean (including the people of Jamaica and Grenada) who have suffered terribly from Hurricane Ivan
Mr. Niskala updated the Minister on the activities of the IFRC Partnership Programme with the Irish Government. The Partnership Programme provides €1.5 million to assist national societies of the IFRC to prepare for and address emergencies and natural disasters.
Speaking after the meeting Minister of State Kitt stated:
“The Red Cross has proved time and again that it is one of the most effective international agencies at responding rapidly and effectively to disasters. In those precious hours after the onset of a disaster, it is local capacity and ability that saves lives. We are working closely with the Red Cross to build this capacity.
The visit of Secretary-General Niskala has been a very valuable opportunity to consolidate the relationship which Ireland has been developing with the Red Cross since our Partnership Programme commenced in 2002. I would also like to pay tribute to the Irish National Red Cross Society which continues to grow in strength as a key member of the International Federation.”
Note to Editors:
The IFRC is the world’s largest humanitarian organisation comprising of 181 national Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies across the world with over 97 million members and volunteers.
The Partnership Programme with Development Cooperation Ireland for 2004/2005 builds on an earlier successful Programme for 2002/2003.