An Iraqi girl standing in a camp for the internally displaced in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Taken on November 2 by Sebastian Juel Frandsen

Number of displaced around Mosul nearly doubles in four days

Around 16,000 Iraqis have been displaced from their homes in and around Mosul over the last four days, raising the total number of displaced to nearly 34,000 since the beginning of operations on October 17 to retake Iraq’s second-largest city from ISIL fighters.

7. Nov. 2016

Formal camps currently host over 9,000 people, with the remaining seeking shelter among host communities. As many as 1.2 million people may still be inside of Mosul and the United Nations and aid agencies have repeatedly warned of a possible humanitarian crisis of historic proportions around the city.

Many displaced families are ending up in Qayarra, 57 kilometres south of Mosul city, where the Iraqi government and aid agencies are together struggling to meet the needs of new arrivals. Existing camps are filling up and a new one, on the local airport runway, is under construction.

“The airstrip camp is initially planned for 5,000 plots—accommodating to up to 30,000 people—with a potential expansion to 15,000 plots,” DRC Iraq Country Director Allen Jelich said. DRC has offered to take over camp management functions when construction work is complete.

“We have relief items and shelter kits in place for around 2,000 households, with more coming. In northern Ninewa province, we have several teams, including multiple protection, distribution, and water/sanitation teams on standby to respond where access will allow.”

Many of the displaced are already attempting to return to villages they deem safe, although areas remain heavily contaminated by explosive remnants of war, which have resulted in civilian casualties in newly-retaken areas.

About DRC

The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) is a humanitarian, non-governmental, non-profit organisation founded in 1956 that works in more than 40 countries throughout the world. DRC fulfils its mandate by providing direct assistance to conflict-affected populations – refugees, internally displaced people (IDPs) and host communities in the conflict areas of the world; and by advocating on behalf of conflict-affected populations internationally, and in Denmark, on the basis of humanitarian principles and the Human Rights Declaration. 

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