Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection

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Children in a refugee camp. Photo credit: Samantha Robison

What are the needs?

ECHO Factsheet

Sectarian violence, in a country already plagued by instability, has resulted in the displacement of hundreds of thousands and an absence of basic protection for the civilian population. Vulnerable groups are increasingly living in hardship, with little access to basic services such as water, sanitation, health-care, or employment and education. Many Iraqis have crossed into neighbouring countries and are living in dire conditions both within and outside Iraq.

The security situation in Iraq has drastically deteriorated, in particular following attacks of armed opposition groups in the central and northern part of the country.

Iraq is facing not only the consequences of its internal conflict, but also those created by the ongoing conflict in neighbouring Syria, and is hosting hundreds of thousands of registered Syrian refugees.

How are we helping?

EU funding provides protection and relief to people displaced inside Iraq, as well as other vulnerable populations affected by the conflict.

In 2014, the EU Civil Protection Mechanism was activated to facilitate and support the rapid deployment of participating states' in-kind assistance and expertise to the region. The Mechanism is coordinated through the European Commission's Emergency Response Coordination Centre (ERCC), which monitors the crisis 24 hours a day.

The Commission also allocates aid to Iraqi refugees in Jordan and Lebanon to cover emergency support to the most vulnerable. In this context, the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) supports the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) whose mandate is to identify the most vulnerable groups, assess their specific needs, and provide protection.

ECHO is also providing support to Syrian refugees inside and outside camps in Iraq, ensuring food assistance, basic health care, water and sanitation, protection, psychosocial support, and the distribution of essential household items.

See the ECHO factsheet on Iraq for the latest facts and figures.

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