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Iraq: UN Launches Humanitarian Effort In Tal Afar

Iraq: UN Launches Humanitarian Effort In Conflict-Torn Tal Afar Region

The United Nations Country Team (UNCT) in Iraq has provided food, water, non-food items, and tents to some 20,000 people displaced or otherwise affected over the past month by the humanitarian crisis in the north-western Tal Afar area, scene of recent battles between insurgents and Iraqi and United States forces.

“To date, the United Nations and its partners have delivered food and non-food items to over 16,000 individuals within Tal Afar city and its environs, as well as to 1,350 displaced families in towns, villages and the Iraqi Red Crescent Society camp near Tal Afar,” the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) said in a statement today.

Over the past month, the UNCT has been able to support the delivery of assistance as well as assist the government in pre-positioning vital supplies such as food, medicines, non-food items and medical supplies to enable a swift response should the situation continue to decline or a similar incident occur in the region, it added.

“Despite a reduction from the initial numbers of over 4,000 families displaced and another 2,000 individuals within the city itself, there remains concern that access to food, water and medical services continues to be hindered by the presence and activities of armed elements,” UNAMI said.

“The UN asks that all actors follow international humanitarian law and guidelines for civil-military interactions.”

The UN has stocks of non-food items such as tents, cooking stoves, heaters, kitchen sets, buckets, jerry cans, blankets, plastic sheeting, mattresses, sanitary items, clothing, and emergency health kits stored in warehouses within easy transporting distance such as Kirkuk.

Contingency funding is also available to effect a swift response to emerging situations, UNAMI said.

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