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International Red Cross: 21 resigned or fired since 2015 in sex cases

Relief supplies from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) are loaded into a plane on December 30, 2008 at Geneva Airport as more injured people flooded in on the fourth day of Israeli forces offensive on the Gaza Strip. At least 363 Palestinians, including 39 children have been killed and 1,720 people wounded in intensive bombardment by Israel on Islamist targets in Gaza. The plane, carrying ten tonnes of medical aid supplies, is due to land later on today in Tel Aviv airport. AFP PHOTO / FABRICE COFFRINI

LONDON — The International Committee of the Red Cross has joined the list of prominent charities that have uncovered sexual misconduct among its staff.

ICRC Director-General Yves Daccord says 21 staff members have resigned or been fired since 2015 after violating policy by paying for sexual services. Two others did not have their contracts renewed because of suspected sexual misconduct.

He says “I am deeply saddened to report these numbers,” calling it a betrayal.

Daccord said because of the decentralized nature of the sprawling aid agency, which has more than 17,000 employees worldwide, it is possible that other incidents were not reported or properly handled.

Plan International UK has also disclosed wrongdoing. The charity group says it has confirmed six cases of sexual abuse of children by staff, volunteers or partner organizations.