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British Red Cross emergency team heads to Libyan border

Tuesday 15 March 2011

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Henry Makiwa:, 0207 877 7042 or out of hours 07659 145095

A British Red Cross emergency hygiene and sanitation team is on its way to Tunisia with the urgently needed sanitation equipment for people fleeing political unrest in neighbouring Libya.

The four-member team comprising of Gwen Wilson, Peter Pearce, Michael Kemsley and Theodoros Kallinteris are travelling to the Tunisian border town of Ben Guerdane, where a camp has been set for 17,000 people fleeing unrest in Libya. They left today (Tuesday 15 March 2011) with emergency latrines and other essential hygiene kit.

Barry Armstrong, British Red Cross disaster response manager, said: “With so many thousands of people living out in tents, sanitation becomes absolutely paramount to prevent the spread of disease.

“We are working with the Tunisian Red Crescent society who are very active in the camp and coordinating our work with other organisations in the camp.”

There are currently 17,000 people in the camp, including around 300 families.

The four-member British Red Cross team is able to deal with the sanitation needs of up to 20,000 people in the aftermath of an emergency.

Between them, team members have responded to emergencies in China, Kenya, Haiti, Namibia, Pakistan and Zimbabwe.
Londoner Michael said: “The work of our team will be vital for making sure people escaping the fighting, who have already been through so much, continue to stay healthy.

“We know that among those who have fled Libya are people from other countries and we will provide support to them as well during their stay in the camp.”


Notes to Editors

For more information on the British Red Cross recovery operations, please visit

The British Red Cross helps people in crisis, whoever and wherever they are. We are part of a global voluntary network, responding to conflicts, natural disasters and individual emergencies.
We enable vulnerable people in the UK and abroad to prepare for and withstand emergencies
in their own communities. And when the crisis is over, we help them to recover and move on
with their lives.