Kurdistan Number of Mosul IDPs in Kurdistan rises to 164,000 people

Number of Mosul IDPs in Kurdistan rises to 164,000 people
A line of displaced people in southern Erbil Province, June 22, 2016. (Photo: Kurdistan24/Alexandre Afonso)

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) on Monday announced the number of people from Mosul displaced to the Kurdistan Region reached 164,000 since the military operation began on Oct. 17, 2016.

The Head of the KRG Joint Crisis Coordination Center (JCC) Hoshang Mohammed stated the ongoing clashes between the Iraqi troops and Islamic State (IS) aggravate the displacement of people from west Mosul.

He mentioned roughly 10,000 people are forced to leave western Mosul on a daily basis, many of whom are transferred to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the Kurdistan Region after reaching Peshmerga front lines.

Although the eastern part of Mosul has already been liberated from the insurgent group, the lack of security and basic services in the city have pushed many people in surrounding areas to move to Kurdistan.

The statement added the large number of IDPs in Kurdistan had created tremendous pressure on the Region’s public services.

It also noted that to this day, 35,000 injured civilians and Iraqi soldiers in Mosul had been treated in Erbil and Dohuk hospitals.

The KRG warns of another influx of Mosul IDPs fleeing to the Kurdistan Region as about 400,000 civilians remain trapped in IS-controlled parts of the city.

Mohammed, who coordinates aid between Erbil, Baghdad, the UN, and other international organizations for IDPs and refugees in the Kurdistan Region, denounced the Federal Government of Iraq for sending limited financial support to the Region.

“Since the start of the Mosul operation until now, Baghdad has sent only IQD 43 billion [USD $36.6 million] to the KRG for the establishment of four camps in Erbil and Dohuk,” he said.

“They sent an additional IQD 961 million [USD $819,348] in aid for the administration of the camps for 2017,” Mohammed added, calling for aid to be sent directly to the Kurdistan Region.

Regarding support offered by the UN and other NGOs to Kurdistan, the head of the JCC stated it accounts for only about 22 percent of all humanitarian needs.

The remaining expenditures requirements, estimated to be $91 million on a monthly basis, rest on the shoulders of the KRG.

“There are nearly 8,200 empty shelters in Dohuk camps as some people have already returned to their liberated areas,” Mohammed explained.

“The KRG does not have the financial capacity to take in a new wave of IDPs,” he emphasized.

Approximately 41,000 IDPs, or 8,500 families, returned to Mosul from the Kurdistan Region.

The Kurdistan Region hosts almost two million refugees and IDPs who have fled from the threat of IS in Syria and Iraq. 

According to the JCC, 1.3 million Iraqi IDPs reside in 38 different camps across Kurdistan.


Editing by Gabrielle Renaud and Karzan Sulaivany