Swiss to help MDA join International Red Cross

Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey told Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom Monday she will issue invitations in the upcoming days for an international conference to pave the way for Magen David Adom to join the International Red Cross (IRC). Calmy-Rey said that the conference, which would be held at the level of ambassadors and senior diplomats, would be asked to approve a plan whereby the IRC would adopt a neutral third emblem in addition to the red cross and red crescent: a red "crystal" into which the red Star of David could be placed for use by MDA staff and volunteers outside of Israel. The MDA has been trying to get into the IRC for some five decades.