KRG delegation partakes in a round-table meeting with donor countries
The Government of Iraq, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the United Nations agencies held a round-table meeting with the donor countries and diplomats based in Baghdad to ask for support for Iraq's internally displaced persons (IDP).
Karim Sinjari, Minister of Interior, Ali Sindi, Minister of Planning, and Falah Mustafa, Head of Department of Foreign Relation represented KRG in the meeting. The conference was chaired by Saleh al-Mutlaq, Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister for Construction and Services and it was attended by Iraq's Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Finance, Migration and Displacement. The representatives of UN agencies as well as 40 ambassadors were also present.
Deputy Prime Mnister Mutlaq said, "Deterioration of security in Iraq which is mainly caused by the attacks of the Islamic State has resulted in the displacement of nearly two million people.”
He added, "Addressing the needs of the IDPs is out of the capacity of Iraq. We are facing harsh financial challenges and sharp decline of oil price has exacerbated the situation. Iraq is in need of $5 billion to meet the needs of IDPs and their return to their areas.”
Iraq's Finance Minister, Hoshiyar Zebari, gave an overview of the financial crisis facing Iraq and announced that the federal government has agreed to allocate $850 million for the ministry of migration and displacement as part of the 215 budget.
According to the KRG's Ministry of Planning and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), 47 percent of all Iraq's 2 million displaced are now in the Kurdistan Region. The rest of the IDPs are spread throughout Iraq having fled conflicts in Anbar, Ninewa, Diyala and Salah al-Din governorates. As people continue to flee the violence, the latest count indicates that some 946,266 Iraqis (157,711 families) have sought sanctuary in the Region since the beginning of the year. This represents an increase of 53,526 individuals since 1 September.
KRG minister of Planning discussed the difficulties facing the KRG in addressing the needs of IDPs in the Region. He said, “Hosting of IDPs in the Kurdistan Region is placing a huge burden on the social services, as well as its financial resources, which is becoming unsustainable.”
"This humanitarian emergency is far from over and with the winter months the challenges are becoming greater by the day. The partnership between the Government of Iraq, the KRG and the international community is fundamental to address this acute problem, but this is not enough: fresh funds are now needed to avert this crisis from becoming a humanitarian catastrophe," said Jacqueline Badcock, the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq.
Commenting on the meeting, Minister Mustafa said, "The large number of IDPs in the Region has stretched the capacity of our infrastructure and social services to the limit. This was a good opportunity for KRG to be present in Baghdad to address members of the international community to highlight the plight of the IDPs.”