As the holy month of Ramadan observed by Muslims across the world approaches, Somalia is facing its most severe drought in the last decade. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is responding to the urgent needs of the population, focusing on conflict-affected, hard-to-reach areas and helping people who fall off the grid. Strengthening of nutritional screening and construction of boreholes — ‘quick fixes’ – is underway.

Detainees in prisons across Somalia are not left behind. In Hargeisa, Mandhera,  Bossaso and Garowe, the ICRC has ensured that milk, dates, sugar, goats, lentils, spices, tomatoes and oil is delivered to prisons, so that detainees will be breaking their fast with additional ingredients to their iftar menu – an evening meal with which they will end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset.

“We are delighted that the ICRC started its support for the central prisons during this holy month. The support came at the right time and with the right quantity of the items. This contributes to the well-being of the detainees, particularly, having a proper meal with which to break the fast.” said one of the authorities in Bossaso Central Prison.

Visits to places of detention are a fundamental part of the work of the ICRC`s around the world. Detainees must have access to basic services and receive humane and dignified treatment throughout their time in detention, and families must at all times be aware of the fate of their relatives and have the chance to be in contact and visit them.

“ICRC’s detention work in Somalia aims to ensure that people deprived of their freedoms are treated with dignity and humanity. Providing extra food items for detainees especially during this month will help detainees observe their fast with dignity.”  said Anike Doherty, ICRC’s Protection Coordinator.