Displaced Yezidis in Kurdistan Region camps call for long-term solutions
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The lack of electricity and humanitarian assistance at displacement camps in the Kurdistan Region’s Duhok province is taking its toll on the IDPs as the summer days get warmer.
People who live in the camps, especially members of the ethnic-minority Yezidi (Ezidi) community, have asked for electricity and water as their living conditions are deteriorating, particularly during the summer over the last five years.
Salim Saaed, the head of media and public affairs at the Board of Relief and Humanitarian Affairs in Duhok, said the Iraqi government and relief organizations had turned their focus toward Mosul following the liberation of Nineveh governorate from the so-called Islamic State.
This has “greatly reduced their aid to the displaced people in the camps,” he told Kurdistan 24. “With 31,000 displaced families living inside the camp and another 34,000 living in the host communities, we need more aid on an international and local level.”
A resident inside the Sharyia camp in Duhok, where a majority of Ezidis reside, said a lack of electricity has a significant impact on the health of infants and children who are the primary victims of the summer heat.
The emergence of the Islamic State and its violent assault on Iraq’s Ezidi-majority city of Sinjar (Shingal) in August 2014 led to the displacement of hundreds of thousands and the killing of thousands of others.
Most of them fled to the Kurdistan Region while others resettled in neighboring countries or Western states.
Despite the military defeat of the terror group, the people of Nineveh governorate and Shingal, in particular, continue to face difficulties in returning to their homes and beginning a new life.
Security risks to their lives, a lack of primary services and utilities, and little to no employment are some of the leading causes that force the people to stay at displacement camps in Kurdistan.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany
(Additional reporting by Rezheen Ahmed)