World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Iraq: UN officials voice concern about abuse of women, girls

Iraq: UN officials voice concern about humanitarian situation, abuse of women, girls

2 July 2014

Amid reports of deliberate targeting of women and girls in Iraq, senior United Nations officials today voiced deep concern about the deteriorating humanitarian and security situations in the country, where more than 1.2 million people have fled their homes in fear for their lives.

“As the security situation continues to worsen, I am extremely worried about the families urgently in need of water, food, shelter, healthcare, sanitation and protection from violence,” said Valerie Amos, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and UN Emergency Relief Coordinator.

That includes targeting of women and children, who have reportedly been kidnapped, raped and forcibly married to militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/ISIS) and other armed groups.

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, expressed deep concern yesterday following the reported suicides of some women who had been raped, and of men who had been forced to watch the rape of their wives and daughters.

“UN Women strongly condemns sexual and gender-based violence, and calls on all parties to address such reports and protect the rights of Iraqi women and girls,” she said.

Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka said such targeting is “a grave violation of human rights” and warned against the risk of growing extremism to women’s rights in the region and worldwide.

An estimated 20,000 women and girls in Iraq are at an increased risk of sexual violence as a result of the mounting crisis in the north and west, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) said earlier this week.

The agency also noted since this latest violence erupted three weeks ago in northern Iraq, of the approximately one million people displaced by the crisis, some 250,000 women and girls – including nearly 60,000 pregnant women – are in need of urgent health care.

In total, more than 2.2 million people are now displaced in Iraq, including one million people already seeking refuge in Iraq as a result of the Syrian conflict and previous conflicts.

The bulk of them have fled to the autonomous Kurdish region, where UN agencies are doing their best to support the humanitarian response despite continued finding and ongoing security constraints, Ms. Amos said, adding: “But we have struggled to raise the funds required.”

To that end, she echoed UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s gratitude to the Government of Saudi Arabia, which yesterday donated $500 million towards the humanitarian effort.

More than 2,417 Iraqis were killed last month and another 2,287 were injured in acts of terrorism and violence, according to the UN Assistance Mission in the country (UNAMI) human rights team.

Mr. Ban and senior UN officials have called for the immediate formation of an inclusive Government in the country and for all sides to take immediate steps to protect civilians.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Mexico: Violence And Repression Of Teachers

The member organizations of Network for Peace express our indignation over the acts of repression that the Mexican State has carried out, through the police forces... In Chiapas, Guerrero and Oaxaca, the conflict has resulted in murders of teachers and civilians as well as hundreds of wounded and dozens of people arrested. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Britain's Pleas For Mercy

So… Boris Johnson is promising that he won't be holding a snap general election, if he's chosen as the next UK Conservative Party leader. Reportedly, he is even making that promise a feature of his leadership campaign, since a vote for Boris would therefore mean (wink wink) that his colleagues wouldn't have to risk their jobs and face the wrath of the British public until 2020. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news