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Magen David Adom

From Academic Kids

Template:Israelis

The Magen David Adom is Israel's only official emergency medical, disaster, ambulance and blood bank service. The name means "Red Star of David."

Its staff of 1200, plus 10,000 volunteers, operates 95 stations which in turn operates a fleet of over 700 ambulances nationwide. It serves as an auxiliary arm of the Israeli military during times of war.

Since its creation, Magen David Adom has been denied membership in the International Red Cross (IRC) since it refused to replace its red Star of David emblem with a red cross. Critics of the IRC assert discrimination based on the fact that in the late 1920s all Islamic states were granted membership while using the Islamic Red Crescent as their emblem, citing the same concerns about the cross.

In protest, the American Red Cross has withheld millions in administrative funding to the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Similar concerns of India and the former USSR regarding the use of non-Hindu and overtly religious symbols were also dismissed by the ICRC, but their national bodies chose to adopt the Red Cross as their official emblems in order to gain entry.

Despite the continued lack of official recognition, since the mid 1990's, there has been extensive and growing co-operation between the MDA and the ICRC including inter alia.: A 2.2 million US dollar spend on strengthening ties between the two organisations, the signing in 2004 of a 2 year co-operation statement, the permanent placement of an ICRC co-operation officer in MDA headquarters, and extensive support of the MDA's blood bank activities.

External links

he:מגן דוד אדום

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