Reference : V-P-AF-E-01969
Date : 2012
Country/Region : AFGHANISTAN
Caption : Kunduz, ICRC office. Saddiqa, a volunteer of the Afghan Red Crescent Society, reads Red Cross messages from prisoners to their families. All the messages are read to make sure there is nothing to compromise the ICRC.
Photographer : DANZIGER, Nick
Confidentiality level : public
Publication restrictions : reserved users only
Copyright : DANZIGER, Nick
Description : RC RC magazine

Issue 1, 2013, p. 11

A volunteer for the Afghanistan Red Crescent, Saddiqa reads messages with Mohammed Ali Hakim, the ICRC tracing officer, to make sure they contain nothing that would compromise the ICRC’s neutrality, independence and impartiality. Most of the letters are in Pashto, others are in Dari, Urdu or even English. “Some have fine drawings, they’re quite remarkable because they have been drawn with a biro [ballpoint pen],” notes Saddiqa. Messages like these are then delivered by volunteers or staff such as Abdul Razaq, who has worked for many years on the front line of Afghanistan’s conflicts including the civil war in Kabul in the 1990s. “Rockets were falling everywhere, it was very dangerous. Every day I was picking the dead and injured fighters and civilians off the streets.”
Today, Abdul says delivering Red Cross messages is one of his favourite duties. “It’s often overwhelming, people are so happy to receive news from a loved one. Sometimes they have gone missing, they do not know what has happened to a son or a brother… and then you bring a message.”

Author: Nick Danziger
Original material : digital
Resolution : 4032x3024
Orientation : landscape
Colour/B&W : colour