International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
Comment by the Information and Press Department of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the kidnapping of workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Syria
On the 13 October five workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and a volunteer from the Syrian Arab Red Crescent were kidnapped by unknown armed persons in the North West of Syria in Idlib Province, where they were studying the situation and providing medical assistance in hospitals in this part of the country and also supplying medicinal products to Sarmin and Idlib. The humanitarian workers were kidnapped in the territory, which is under the control of the Syrian armed opposition, when they returned to Damascus in cars bearing the ICRC emblem. No group has claim responsibility for this kidnapping yet.
Moscow most decisively denounces this daring crime committed against international representatives, who provide ordinary Syrians with help they really need, frequently doing it under threat to their own lives.
At the same time, we welcome the decision of the ICRC leaders not to wind down the activities of the Red Cross, which are so in demand in Syria and to continue their humanitarian mission.
We appeal to all those who are behind the kidnapping of the Red Cross workers to immediately free the ICRC workers without any conditions. We trust the external forces who have influence onthe armed formations in Idlib Province will apply the required influence on representatives of the opposition.
14 October 2013