Iranian Red Crescent Society

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Iranian Red Crescent Society
Formation1922; 101 years ago (1922)
FounderAmir Amir-Aʿlam[1]
TypeNonprofit organization
Legal statusLegislated by the Iranian Parliament on 28 April 1988[1]
PurposeHumanitarian aid
HeadquartersBuilding of Peace, 136 Valiasr St., Tehran
Region served
  • Relief operations
  • Search and rescue
  • Education
  • Research
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • Textile manufacturing
  • Healthcare
Secretary General
Dr. Yaghob Soleymani
Pir-Hossein Kolivand[2]
Budget (2016–17)
$231.36 million[3]
Staff (2005)
7,000 paid employees[4]
Volunteers (2017)
Formerly called
Red Lion and Sun Society

The Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS), officially the Red Crescent Society of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Persian: جمعیت هلال احمر جمهوری اسلامی ایران, romanizedJamʿiyyat-e Helâl-e Ahmar-e Jomhuri-ye Eslâmi-ye Irân) is a non-governmental humanitarian organization in Iran.[1] Founded as the Red Lion and Sun Society in 1922,[4] it became affiliated with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in 1924[6] and changed its name and emblem in 1980, informing the international community of Hilal Ahmar adoption[7] while assuming the right to adopt the former emblem in future.[1]

The society is one of the world's largest national societies within IFRC[4] and is noted for its special expertise in responding to earthquakes.[8]

Since inception, the IRCS has participated in a variety of public activities. Its core activity is to perform relief and rescue operations to help victims and the injured in natural disasters and accidents. It also engages a in wide range of humanitarian services in health and rehabilitation, training and research.[4] The society had a therapeutic approach and was regarded a major healthcare institution with thousands of hospital beds across the country until 1979, when all of its medical facilities were transferred to the Ministry of Health.[1]

IRCS is an example of strong national societies that play an important role domestically[8] and is held in high esteem by the Iranian general public.[4]


Emblem formerly used for the Red Lion and Sun Society

IRCS has 30 governorate headquarters, one in each province of Iran, and 330 branches throughout the country, as of 2005.[4] Based on the latest structure, it is made up of four departments: relief and rescue (emdād wa najāt), medical provisions (tadārokāt-e pezeški), volunteers (dāvṭalabān), and youth (javānān).[1] The latter is largely made up of high school and university student members.[4]

According to the law enacted by the Iranian Parliament, the society is run by a chairman appointed by the President of Iran. This procedure is in contrast with the elective nature of a society chairman as suggested by the IFRC.[1] The secretary general is responsible for the administrative and executive affairs.[1]

Other subordinates[edit]

IRCS owns and runs Helal Iran Textile Industries Co., a producer of blankets and tents.[9] SOHA, a manufacturer of disposable medical devices is also owned by the society,[10] as well as Shahrvand, a daily newspaper.[11] The Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal, an English language peer-reviewed journal on clinical and scientific medicine, is another publication of IRCS.[12]


Heads of the society have been:[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Ghassemlou, Farid (21 January 2016). "JAMʿIYAT-E HELĀL-E AḤMAR-E IRĀN". Encyclopædia Iranica (Online ed.). New York City: Bibliotheca Persica Press.
  2. ^ "UN Humanitarian head praised Iran for rescue attempts after quake", Islamic Republic News Agency, 23 November 2017, 82740384, retrieved 24 November 2017
  3. ^ "IRCS Slams Meager Budget Increase", Financial Tribune, 19 December 2016, 82632949, retrieved 24 November 2017, The government has increased IRCS budget for renovation and procurement of relief supplies by 1,000 billion rials ($25.64 million at market exchange rate) to 5,000 billion rials ($128.2 million). IRCS's budget for relief supplies saw a steep cut of 3,000 billion rials ($76.92 million) last year to stand at 7,000 billion rials ($179.48 million). It was again reduced to 4,000 billion rials ($102.56 million) in the current Iranian year's budget, the Persian daily Shahrvand reported.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Toni Pfanner, Andreas Wigger and Mostafa Mohaghegh (June 2005), "Interview with Ahmad Ali Noorbala", International Review of the Red Cross, International Committee of the Red Cross, 87 (858): 241–253 – via Cambridge University Press{{citation}}: CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  5. ^ "Red Crescent volunteer organization with 2mn members", Islamic Republic News Agency, 15 August 2017, 82632949, retrieved 24 November 2017
  6. ^ "IRCS among top five int'l relief bodies", Iran daily, 4 January 2015, 58883, retrieved 24 November 2017
  7. ^ H. Beer and J. Moreillon (December 1980), "Adoption of the red crescent by the Islamic Republic of Iran", International Review of the Red Cross, International Committee of the Red Cross, 20 (219): 316–317, doi:10.1017/S002086040006736X – via Cambridge University Press{{citation}}: CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  8. ^ a b Jonathan Benthall (subscription required) (1997). "The Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Islamic Societies, with Special Reference to Jordan". British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies. British Society for Middle Eastern Studies. 24 (2): 157–177. doi:10.1080/13530199708705644. JSTOR 195770.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  9. ^ "ICRC hails Iran Textile Industries' contributions", Mehr News Agency, 14 January 2015, 2558936, retrieved 24 November 2017
  10. ^ "ICRC, IRCS For Stronger Ties" (PDF), Iran daily, no. 4267, p. 3, 28 June 2012, 2558936, retrieved 24 November 2017
  11. ^ Fairoza Ramadan Zada (27 January 2017), "Harrowing Images Shock Iranand Spark Widespread Outrage" (PDF), The Majalla, no. 1630, p. 4, retrieved 24 November 2017
  12. ^ "About the Journal". Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal. doi:10.32592/ircmj.Crossmark. ISSN 2074-1804. Retrieved 1 January 2021.

External links[edit]