The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Peter Maurer, arrived in Moscow on Wednesday to continue the ICRC’s ongoing humanitarian discussions with the Russian authorities.
Mr Maurer plans to speak about the pressing humanitarian issues to be addressed to alleviate suffering of people affected by the conflict in Ukraine.
“The devastation caused by the conflict in recent weeks, as well as eight years of conflict in Donbas, has been vast. There are practical steps guided by international humanitarian law that the parties must take to limit the suffering. I was in Kyiv last week and I’m in Moscow this week to continue the discussion with the authorities on these steps,” said Mr Maurer.
Humanitarian issues in places such as Syria or in relation with the consequences of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict are also on the agenda, a continuation of a long-running dialogue.
Mr Maurer plans to meet with representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense. He will also meet with the chairman of the Russian Red Cross, which is doing significant work providing assistance to those who arrived in Russia after fleeing from their homes in Donbas.
The ICRC is seeking to increase the respect of international humanitarian law and work within its mandate as neutral and impartial intermediary to address humanitarian issues and facilitate dialogue between all sides.
To meet the growing humanitarian needs, the ICRC is massively scaling up its work, including moving in additional assistance and specialists. For the humanitarian response to be more effective, neutral and impartial humanitarian space must be agreed upon and respected so this much-needed assistance reaches those in need.