A ferry flying the flag of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is currently evacuating about 240 patients from Putumattalan to Trincomalee. They had fled Puthukkudiyiruppu Hospital in the northern Vanni region on 4 February after it sustained repeated shelling. The patients are expected to arrive in Trincomalee this evening and receive medical treatment. The operation started after both parties had granted safe passage. Civil authorities, medical staff, the fishermen’s union and church representatives are also actively supporting the evacuation. An additional 160 patients still in Putumattalan should be evacuated on 11 February.