Monday, 30 March 2015 15:41

Launching of the “HUMANITARIAN SUPPORT TO IDPS IN IRAQ THROUGH PROVISION OF DURABLE SHELTER” Project funded by the Government of Japan

Through the support of the Government of Japan, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) in Iraq launched a project to support internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the country to enhance self-reliance and improve living conditions of IDPs through provision of prefabricated durable shelters and basic services in the shelter sites in Baghdad, Dohuk and Kerbala Governorates. 

 

The Project Launching Ceremony was held in Baghdad on 29 March 2015, and chaired by H.E. Dr. Hamed Khalaf the Secretary General of the Iraqi Ministers Council.  Dr. Salam al-Khafaji, Deputy Minister of Displacement and Migration, opened the ceremony with his remarks expressing gratitude to the Government of Japan for supporting this important project, and the strong commitment of the Ministry as well as the Government of Iraq to provide full support to the project despite deteriorating security situation in Iraq.   

Ms. Lise Grande, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General and United Nations Resident Coordinator and the Humanitarian Coordinator, welcomed the guests and assured that the United Nations in Iraq is committed to work with the Government to support vulnerable people at risk. Ms. Grande also thanked the Government of Japan for the generous contribution to support humanitarian activities in Iraq that was announced last month and for the timely support to this innovative project that provides comprehensive support addressing all aspects of camp, including shelter, livelihood, health and education, to ensure that displaced people can live in dignity. 

H.E. Mr. Kazuya Nashida, Ambassador of Japan in the Republic of Iraq, delivered a statement emphasizing the importance of shelter support to displaced persons. H.E. Mr. Nashida referred to two major earthquakes Japan had experienced in 1995 and 2011, which displaced numerous people in Japan, and stated that this project in Iraq applies lessons learned from Japan’s experience in supporting IDPs. 

Mr. Dyfed Aubrey, Regional Director, UN-HABITAT Regional Office for Arab States, also delivered a statement that highlighted the rapid demographic change and the severe pressure it poses on cities in Iraq. Mr. Aubrey emphasized the need to support communities as a whole, in collaboration with civil societies, local governments and private sectors, to ensure seamless transition from emergency assistance to long-term solutions and to prevent IDP camps becoming slums as seen in few  cases in the region. 

Mr. Erfan Ali, Head of UN-HABITAT Iraq Programme, delivered a presentation on UN-HABITAT IDPs shelter projects in Iraq. In his presentation, Mr. Ali provided an overview of the current situation in Iraq where violence triggered by the group that calls itself Islamic States (IS) has resulted in more than 2.5 million IDPs across the country leading to a complex humanitarian crisis, and explained how UN-HABITAT, in partnership with other UN entities, has been providing not only short-term emergency response but also more durable and sustainable solutions to support IDPs based on mid- and long-term perspectives. Mr. Ali highlighted on the exerted efforts to design the new sites through the Japanese funding in Baghdad, Karbella and Duhok to establish three IDPs shelter compounds with total capacity of 1700 units in this stage within properly planed sites, provided with the needed infrastructure, services and livelihood initiatives after implementation.   

For further information, please contact: 

 

Masayuki Yokota, 

Head of Kurdistan Region of Iraq Office, OiC, UN-HABITAT Iraq Programme 

Phone: +964 750 021 1813 

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

 

Additional Info

  • Agency: UN-HABITAT

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