Kurdistan Region open to Syria Kurds
“The doors are always open for Syria Kurds who want to live in the Kurdistan Region”, says the KRG
In a statement, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Ministry of the Interior denied that Syria Kurds have been prevented from entering the Kurdistan Region.
“The Government is following the prescribed procedures for Kurds from the Kurdish part of Syria who wants to live in the Kurdistan Region. The newcomers will be highly respected here, as they already have been,” read the statement.
The statement came after a news channel reported that some Kurdish families from Syria were stuck on the Iraq-Jordan border and had been prevented from entering the Kurdistan Region.
Responding to the report, the Interior Ministry said the families had not entered the Kurdistan region but had moved to the United Nations’ Altash camp and were aiming to exit Iraq. Some of the families have already been sent to Europe, while others are waiting to see whether they will be granted permission to do the same.
Since the start of the war in Syria in 2011, more than 200,000 refugees, mainly Kurds, have crossed into the autonomous Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq.
Tens of thousands arrived in October 2013 after the Kurdistani authorities opened the border to families fleeing violent clashes between the Kurdish People’s Defense Units (YPG) and rebels of the extremist Islamist Jabhat al-Nusrah.
Special boards were established by KRG for refugee affairs and to oversee their relocation in the new camps. The boards are coordinating the actions of the Red Crescent, the Barzani Foundation and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which are currently providing aid to the refugees.
With no end in sight to the war in Syria, the refugees will not be returning home any time soon and the Kurdistan authorities have announced plans to provide schools, hospitals, water, electricity and fire-fighting services to refugees in the Qushtapa and Basirma camps in Erbil province and the camps in other provinces.