Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, January 12, 2007

Exodus of Iraqis exceeds expectations

The multitude of internally displaced Iraqi refugees has escalated to unavoidable numbers, the IRIN reported today. The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) recently announced that the number of internally displaced persons has strained the capacity of many humanitarian organizations. Unrelenting violence in Iraq’s central and southern regions has forced tens of thousands of citizens to flee. The amount of displaced persons has surpassed UNCHR’S 2003 initial estimates. With such large numbers, many areas are running out of the appropriate resources to accommodate the refugees. Additionally, there is fear that some will attempt to find permanent settlement elsewhere; many of those are skilled professionals essential to the Iraqi rebuilding process.

However, in the southern Iraqi city of Najaf, local authorities have allocated pieces of land to displaced families. Since 2003, many local people and displaced Iraqis have been living in abandoned government buildings and tents in the area. The local authorities, who are supplying the construction materials and covering any additional costs, are allowing local residents to build permanent housing, and displaced residents to build temporary housing.

For the article on the UNHCR, click here.
For the article on the reconstruction efforts in Najaf, click here.


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