International Committee of the Red Cross
The International Committee for the relief of military wounded, established in 1863 following the Battle of Solferino and the vision of Henry Dunant, became the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in 1876. Since then the ICRC is in the front of humanitarian missions and movement as well as the initiator for the relevant Conventions in 1907 of the Hague and Geneva Conventions of 1929 and 1949 dealing exclusively with Humanitarian law.
Τhe International Committee of the Red Cross is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose main humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of war and to provide them with assistance. It directs and coordinates the international relief activities conducted by the Movement in situations of conflict. It also endeavors to prevent suffering by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles.
The Greek Red Cross was established in 1877 and since then is a member of the Red Cross-Red Crescent Family. It is the largest non governmental Organization in Greece always active in cooperation with the competent Greek authorities to help those in need.
The ICRC organizes special briefings where the Greek Mission participates on a constant basis, publicizing the Appeals to cover the operational commitments and the range of its activities.
The Greek Red Cross is at the moment active in programs in Zimbabwe, Congo and Malawi.
The Greek Mission in Geneva closely followed the developments pertaining the question of the third additional emblem, beyond the Red Cross and the Red Crescent and actively participated in the relevant consultation.
The Swiss Government, acting as depositary of the 1949 Geneva Conventions had put in motion informal consultations with the States Parties to the said Conventions in order to explore their intentions on the perspective of convening a Diplomatic Conference, having as primary responsibility to adopt the additional emblem. The preparatory Consultations being held in September 2005 did not result in any substantial progress, due to the intransigence of certain member states.
Due to the intransigence of some countries a solution by consensus could not be reached and as a consequence, the Diplomatic Conference adopted the Draft Protocol to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the adoption of an Additional Distinctive Emblem by a vote. The Greek Delegation proceeded to the signature of the Protocol. The protocol entered into force six months after the first two instruments of ratification or accession have been deposited (8.12.2005).