Thursday, 29 April 2021 23:40

Support to agricultural livelihoods of rural and peri-urban returnees and communities in Nineveh Governorate, Iraq - FAO and EU support to Ninawa farmers to mitigate drought

Baghdad, 28 April 2021 - The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nation, in collaboration with the Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture, today distributed quantities of feed and summer sorghum seeds to livestock breeders in Nineveh Governorate, supporting 400 beneficiaries.

FAO Representative in Iraq, Salah Hajj Hassan, expressed his appreciation to the Government of Iraq for its support and participation in the implementation of agricultural developmental projects.

"Investing in agricultural assistance today will provide food for tomorrow; and can ensure people have a source to have a sustainable future of food," said Abdul Hakeem ElWaer, FAO Assistant Director General and Regional Representative for the Near East and North Africa.

Deputy Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs for Iraq, Ms. Irena Vojackova-Sollorano, has indicated the importance of supporting and aiding farmers, especially the returnees, who lost their property and livelihoods. She also mentioned the efforts of the United Nations Agencies.

Ms. Barbara Egger, the EU Head of Cooperation in Iraq, said: “I am pleased to see that, thanks to the strong partnership between FAO and the authorities, the distribution of feed and seeds to approximately four hundred households, including returnees, in the sub-district of Baashiqa in Nineveh under this EU funded initiative”. “During a time where the country has been badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as drought, it is important to restore livelihoods in order to increase the resilience of rural communities”.

Dr. Duraid Hekmat Tobya, Director of Nineveh Agriculture Directorate, stated: “FAO projects and activities in Iraq work towards developing the agricultural sector with its both crop and animal components not only in Nineveh governorate in particular but all over Iraq”.

FAO Livestock Expert, Dr. Chedly Kayouli, confirmed that "the dependence of livestock breeders in Iraq in general and Nineveh Governorate in particular on giving excessive quantities of cereal grains (wheat and barley) to their animals is considered as poor feeding system not sustainable. Therefore, we wanted livestock breeders to use green fodder in raising livestock in order to improve milk production as well as for the purpose of fattening (meat production), and I believe that we succeeded in that, in cooperation with Nineveh agricultural extension staff”.

For more information, please contact:
René Verduijn
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Mob:+964 (0)77 261 747 99

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