Bangui/Geneva, 26 June 2017 – The Central African Red Cross Society and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) condemn the brutal killing of a Red Cross volunteer in the town of Bangassou over the weekend.
Joachim Ali was killed by an unidentified armed group on the evening of 23 June while on duty at the Red Cross compound.
“We are in a very sombre mood following the death of Joachim Ali. He was a young, brave man. He was committed and dedicated to his work,” said Antoine Mbao-Bogo, the President of the Central African Red Cross Society. “We remind all parties that the role of the Red Cross is to help all people in need – regardless of faith or affiliation. We are in mourning, but our commitment is unwavering.”
The security situation in the Central African Republic has steadily deteriorated in recent months. Fighting in Bangassou, as well as in the towns of Bria and Alindao has displaced more than 100,000 people in the past weeks. There are now more than 500,000 people displaced across CAR, along with an estimated 450,000 who have been forced to flee to neighbouring countries.
“The Central African Red Cross Society has been a voice of reason and calm throughout this conflict,” said IFRC Secretary General, Elhadj As Sy. “We call on all parties to respect the neutrality and impartiality of the Red Cross, and to do all they can to facilitate their access to people in need.
“We extend our sincerest condolences to Mr Ali’s family, and to his dedicated Red Cross colleagues,” said Mr Sy.
Since the beginning of 2017, at least 19 National Red Cross and Red Crescent Society volunteers and staff have been killed in the line of duty around the world.