Wednesday, December 7, 2011

ICRC Alarmed By Escalating Violence In Yemen

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 7(Bernama) -- The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is deeply alarmed by escalating violence in the Yemeni city of Taiz as well as the security situation which was making it extremely difficult for medical personnel to treat the injured.
Eric Marclay, the ICRC's head of delegation in Yemen, said there were worrying reports of injured people being unable to reach the medical facilities, and of facilities being attacked and damaged.
"The violence has had a serious impact on basic services in recent weeks, with life-saving medical services especially hard hit. The escalating violence on the streets of Taiz has left dozens dead or wounded'" he said in a statement posted on the ICRC website.
In some cases, Yemen Red Crescent volunteers and others transporting the injured, have been prevented from saving lives or have been injured themselves.
"Trying to save life can cost you your own these days," Marclay said.
"Anyone who is injured must be able to receive life-saving medical care without delay. Access to health care infrastructure must not be arbitrarily denied or limited. It is essential that medical staff, vehicles and facilities be protected and respected," he added.
The Geneva-based ICRC, which has a regional office here, also calls on the authorities, fighters and all others involved to respect human life and dignity and to allow first-aid and medical teams to treat and transport injured people in safety.
The organisation, which has been helping medical facilities cope with casualties since the unrest started in Yemen early this year, said that for the last few days, a team of ICRC surgeons had been working hand in hand with local doctors in Taiz, carrying out life-saving surgery.

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