More

    UN, Red Cross Communication Approaches in Ukraine Offer Study in Contrast

    NewsUN, Red Cross Communication Approaches in Ukraine Offer Study...
    - Advertisment -

    UN, Red Cross Communication Approaches in Ukraine Offer Study in Contrast

    The Red Cross and the United Nations seem to have opted for different communication strategies about the life saving operation the two organisations have undertaken to evacuate civilians from the Azovstal steel plant in Ukraine’s port city of Mariupol.

    The United Nations, putting its best foot forward in sync with Secretary General António Guterres’ travel to Moscow and Kyiv is not shying away from publicity for its interventions in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

    The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has, on the other hand, been a little less proactive.

    Guterres had, while in Moscow, brokered an in-principle agreement to a joint UN-Red Cross operation to evacuate desperate civilians trapped in the Azovstal steel plant in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol.

    - Advertisement -

    The operation is now on, a spokesperson for the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) confirmed on Sunday.

    The Azovstal steel plant has a series of labyrinthine bunkers and tunnels that have helped people – civilians and soldiers – survive the Russian attacks.

    “A safe passage operation…is ongoing today”, said Saviano Abreu, of OCHA in Ukraine, adding that the efforts are being “coordinated” by the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross, “in coordination with the parties to the conflict.”

    The ICRC too confirmed that the long-awaited effort to bring people out of the sprawling Azovstal steel plant was being done by the ICRC with the United Nations and in coordination with Ukrainian and Russian officials.

    ICRC’s studied silence

    The International Committee of Red Cross and the United Nations seem to have opted for different communication strategies about the life saving operation the two organisations have undertaken to evacuate civilians from the Azovstal steel plant in Ukraine’s port city of Mariupol.

    The ICRC has been guarded with its words, seemingly observing a studies silence. The UN has been a bit forthcoming, sharing some not-so-vital details. Their communication strategies offer a case study in contrasting approaches, possibly with prior agreement between the two organisations.

    In contrast to the UN’s bullish assertions, the ICRC has been economical with words and while the UN spokesperson’s words appear in the media, there is little further detail coming from ICRC’s four assigned spokespersons in Kyiv, Moscow and Geneva.

    The ICRC website has only mentioned that a convoy of buses and ambulances left on 29 April, travelled some 230 kilometres and reached the plant in Mariupol on Saturday morning, local time in a complex operation conducted in coordination with the parties to the conflict and the United Nations.

    “As a neutral and impartial humanitarian intermediary, the ICRC has been facilitating the dialogue between the parties on the safe passage of civilians since late February,” its brief statement reads.

    Even Ukranian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s tweet only mentioned the UN, not the Red Cross.

    Little detail

    According to news reports, more than 100 civilians were allowed to leave in the first phase of the operation. It was clear that the UN was the source of these news reports.

    The agreement between the Russian and Ukrainian authorities is to allow for evacuation of civilians trapped in the steel plant for nearly two months, prioritising “women, children and the elderly.”

    There are not confirmed reports of the death toll inside Mariupol. The city’s mayor earlier reported that over 20,000 civilians have been killed.

    Abreu said in his statement on Sunday that the operation had begun with a UN-Red Cross convoy leaving from Zaporizka for Mariupol on Friday, a journey of around 230 kilometres.

    The safety of the evacuees will mark the first instance of a convoy organised by humanitarian agencies securing the passage of civilians since the Russia invasion.

    Cautious. Confidential

    The ICRC says it is not sharing more details about the operation “to avoid jeopardizing the safety of the civilians and the convoy.” Besides this, it has said that “relevant local authorities are communicating with people in Mariupol about practical details.”

    The UN said, “As the operations are still ongoing, we will not provide further details at this point”, he said, “to guarantee the safety of the civilians and humanitarians in the convoy.”

    Abreu’s statement has concluded by saying that the UN “will continue to push for the safe passage out of Mariupol city for all those civilians who wish to leave. The UN is engaging actively with parties to advance these efforts.”

    Yet, much in contrast, a story appearing on UN’s website says, “The last Ukrainian soldiers left defending the city, have been holed up inside the vast Soviet-era steel works – together with reportedly hundreds of civilians – which has a series of labyrinthine bunkers and tunnels, which has prevented Russian forces from securing the last pockets of resistance.”

    - Advertisement -

    LEAVE A REPLY

    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    Latest news

    India- Bangladesh Meet to Build Capacities of Civil Servants

    The National Centre of Good Governance has successfully conducted 71 Capacity Building Programs for 2660 Bangladesh Civil Service Officers from 2014...

    UN Rights Office Urges Sri Lanka to Reveal Fate of the Disappeared

    The report outlined the extensive psychological, social and economic impact on the families, particularly on women who often become...

    Are Government Schemes Meaningful in the Absence of Land Rights?

    It is evident that the effects of the project are not uniformly distributed, as certain villages experience benefits while...

    Sub-Committee for GRAP Directs Agencies to Take Dust Abatement Measures

    The sub-committee for GRAP has undertaken a comprehensive review of the air quality scenario in the National Capital Region...
    - Advertisement -

    Educating the Mind Without Educating the Heart is No Education at All

    By Yasmine Sherif The words above, by the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, serve as a reminder that we still have...

    Poultry Industry Leaders Unite Over Industry Principles to Reduce the Need to Use Antimicrobials

    Collectively, these organizations reach over 100 countries and represent over 40 per cent of global poultry meat production spanning...

    Must read

    India- Bangladesh Meet to Build Capacities of Civil Servants

    The National Centre of Good Governance has successfully conducted 71 Capacity...

    UN Rights Office Urges Sri Lanka to Reveal Fate of the Disappeared

    The report outlined the extensive psychological, social and economic...
    - Advertisement -

    More from the sectionRELATED
    Recommended to you