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Rezidor Supports UN Refugee Agency in Egypt and Tunisia

The Rezidor Hotel Group has announced its support for the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). Throughout June and July 2011, all 300 Rezidor hotels in operation across Europe, the Middle East and Africa have been collecting monetary donations from employees and guests for refugees from Libya who found shelter in Tunisia and Egypt.

"The violence in Libya has forced more than 800,000 people to flee the country – many of them are now waiting in Tunisia and Egypt for urgent help. We would like to make a collective impact, support the UNHCR's emergency assistance and contribute to a quick recovery of the Tunisian and Egyptian markets for tourism," said Kurt Ritter, president and CEO of Rezidor.

"The campaign is a strong and engaging call to action. We hope that many guests and employees at Rezidor's hotels will be inspired to reach out to those forced to flee harrowing circumstances in Libya," added UNHCR deputy high commissioner Alexander Aleinikoff.

UNHCR works in close co-operation with the Tunisian and Egyptian governments, the Red Crescent and the International Organisation for Migration - the agency has established transit camps for refugees from Libya, and provides emergency shelter, food assistance, water and sanitation. UNHCR is also involved in the repatriation of third country nationals fleeing Libya and brings migrant workers back to their home countries.

"Even small donations can make a big impact," commented Inge Huijbrechts, director of Responsible Business at Rezidor. "40 US$ is enough for 10 blankets, 100 US$ provides a survival kit including blanket, mattress, kitchen set, cooking stove and soap and for 200 US$ UNHCR can buy an all-weather tent to shelter families."

The Rezidor Hotel Group supports UNHCR within the scope of an industry leading and award-winning Responsible Business Programme. Rezidor was one of the first international hotel groups to implement a company-wide initiative focusing on health and safety for guests and employees, on respect for social and ethical issues within the company, and on a reduced negative impact on the environment. In 2010 and 2011, Rezidor was named as one of the World's Most Ethical Companies. Rezidor's Radisson Blu and Park Inn hotels in Egypt and Tunisia regularly support local and regional charity organizations and help their respective communities socially as well as economically.

"Our commitment to the UNHCR humanitarian efforts in the region is a logical addition and development of our existing Responsible Business activities. We want to be an engaged global player with a sense for local needs, and meet this challenge as an opportunity in our corporate 'Yes I Can'-spirit," concluded Huijbrechts.