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Iraq: UNHCR Welcomes New Govt Policy On Displaced

Iraq: UN refugee agency welcomes new government policy on displaced people

9 July 2008 - The United Nations refugee agency has welcomed a new Iraqi Government policy to provide support to 240,000 families which have been newly displaced within the country as a result of ongoing unrest and violence.

"By adopting this National Policy the Government of Iraq makes it clear that it wants to strengthen the protection of and assistance to displaced persons, and it indicates its willingness to work towards durable solutions for the displaced," Daniel Endres, the Iraq Representative of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said at a conference in Baghdad yesterday.

The new government policy describes the rights and needs of displaced people in Iraq and outlines the necessity of coordination and cooperation between the different Iraqi ministries and the international community.

The launch of the policy took place at a national conference presided over by the Iraqi Minister of Displacement and Migration, and supported by UNHCR and the UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS).

A total of 4.7 million Iraqis have been uprooted as a result of the crisis in their country. Of these over 2 million are living as refugees in neighbouring countries - mostly Syria and Jordan - while 2.7 million are internally displaced inside Iraq.

ENDS

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