A total of 90 Iraqi civilians were killed and another 117 injured in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq in August 2018*, according to casualty figures recorded by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

The figures include ordinary citizens and others considered civilian at the time of death or injury, such as police in non-combat functions, civil defence, personal security teams, facilities protection police and fire department personnel.

Of the overall figures recorded by UNAMI for the month of August, the number of civilians killed (not including police) was 82, while the number of injured (not including police) was 113.

Baghdad was the worst affected Governorate, with 77 civilian casualties (24 killed, 53 injured), followed by Ninewa (29 killed and 10 injured) and Anbar (06 killed and 26 injured). Figures for Anbar were obtained by UNAMI from the Health Directorate in Anbar Governorate, and are updated until 30 August, inclusive.

*CAVEAT: UNAMI has been hindered in effectively verifying casualties in certain areas; in some cases, UNAMI could only partially verify certain incidents. Figures for casualties from Anbar Governorate are provided by the Health Directorate and might not fully reflect the number of casualties due to the increased volatility of the situation on the ground in Anbar and the disruption of services. For these reasons, the figures reported have to be considered as the absolute minimum.

(Source: United Nations)

Two former detainees and the father of a man who died in detention have provided details of ill-treatment, torture, and death in facilities run by the Iraqi Interior Ministry in the Mosul area, Human Rights Watch said on Sunday.

A detainee held by the ministry’s Intelligence and Counter Terrorism Office in an east Mosul prison from January to May 2018 said he witnessed and experienced repeated torture during interrogations, and saw nine men die there, at least two from the abuse.

Another man from Mosul, arrested in March by local police, died during police interrogation in the Mosul police station, his father said. And a man who was held in the Intelligence and Counter Terrorism prison in Qayyarah said he saw other men returning from interrogations with signs of abuse on their bodies.

More here.

(Source: HRW)

A total of 79 Iraqi civilians were killed and another 99 injured in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq in July 2018*, according to casualty figures recorded by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

The figures include ordinary citizens and others considered civilian at the time of death or injury, such as police in non-combat functions, civil defence, personal security teams, facilities protection police and fire department personnel.

Of the overall figures recorded by UNAMI for the month of July, the number of civilians killed (not including police) was 71, while the number of injured (not including police) was 82.

Baghdad was the worst affected Governorate, with 63 civilian casualties (30 killed, 33 injured), followed by Kirkuk (08 killed, 34 injured) and Ninewa (13 killed and 05 injured).

According to information obtained by UNAMI from the Health Directorate in Anbar, the Governorate suffered a total of 16 civilian casualties (7 killed, 9 injured). Figures are updated until 31 July 2018, inclusive.

*CAVEAT: UNAMI has been hindered in effectively verifying casualties in certain areas; in some cases, UNAMI could only partially verify certain incidents. Figures for casualties from Anbar Governorate are provided by the Health Directorate and might not fully reflect the number of casualties due to the increased volatility of the situation on the ground in Anbar and the disruption of services. For these reasons, the figures reported have to be considered as the absolute minimum.

(Source: United Nations)

The Iraq Governance and Security and Justice Programmes are key in delivering the UK’s mission to support the Iraqi Government and people as they build a stable, prosperous and democratic nation.

Working with the Government of Iraq, the UN Mine Action Service (UNMAS) and the UNDP, CSSF funding has helped to rebuild essential infrastructure in areas liberated from Daesh, and cleared it of explosive hazards, enabling over 3.6m people to return home and access basic services, including healthcare, education, water and electricity.

CSSF support to the UNDP-led Funding Facility for Stabilisation, a multi-donor pooled fund, has helped deliver over 1,500 stabilisation projects restoring services and essential infrastructure in liberated areas. UNDP has staff deployed across Iraq, including embedded stabilisation advisors in 10 municipalities to support project planning.

The programme has provided cash for work for both men and women, and stimulated local business through reconstruction contracts. Over 15,000 residents earned a wage whilst restoring their homes and city.

Inclusion is critical to the stabilisation effort—and women have been recruited as engineers, social workers and in local councils. In total over 2,000 jobs and more than 1,000 small business grants have been created for women, and over 1,000 vulnerable women and female headed households have benefitted from cash for work programmes.

As well as the ‘pooled’ Funding Facility for Stabilisation projects, CSSF funding has specifically paid for the rehabilitation of a water plant serving over 300,000 people in Mosul and repaired over 2,000 homes in the city.

In Mosul the UNMAS demining programme has facilitated the removal of more than 585,000 explosive hazards, helping to enable the return of nearly 1 million people. Clearance locations include Al Khansa Hospital in Mosul and four schools in Al Qayarra, helping 1,286 children return to school.

To download the full report from the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, please click here.

The Nineveh Governor Nofal al-Akoub and EU Delegation representative Mathieu Goodstein launched the Online Damage Assessment System in Mosul at the Governorate building.

The system gathers information about the damage of vital facilities in a centralised data base and informs administration and donors on both needs and projects implementation in restoring stability and future development of the city.

The reporting system uses web and mobile phone applications, easy graphical interface in both English and Arabic languages, and contains the damages assessed in the province accurately for each sector.

Furthermore, it provides an opportunity for citizens, local and international government agencies, NGOs and donors to monitor process of reconstruction and improvement of services that are fundamental to daily life.

Mathieu Goodstein from the Delegation of the European Union to Iraq, said:

“This project illustrates perfectly well the tangible impacts such initiative has. The real time data collection equally strengthens accountability on all sides of the equation, and the end result is the improvement of the conditions of the people of Ninewa. It is noteworthy to point out that such tool is “homegrown”, epitomizing an Iraqi solution of an Iraqi situation. Widening its scope, this tool clearly has the potential to be replicated in other Governorates – covering a wide range of sectors”.

Nofal al-Akoub, Governor of Nineveh stated that:

“This EU  visit is a support to the local government of Nineveh. We also thank UNDP for its support for the reconstruction, which was the first organization to support of Nineveh province. This online system is unique in Iraq and the rest of the provinces can borrow this experience and we are fully prepared to support that.”

The system was developed under Local Area Development Programme (LADP), implemented by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and funded by the European Union. In addition, LADP has supported the Governorate in building capacity for effective planning through the development of Ninewa Response Plan.

(Source: UNDP)

Mine clearance is crucial to prevent the loss of civilian lives, to ensure access for emergency aid, and to enable hundreds of thousands of internally displaced people to return safely to their homes. This is why we are now increasing our support for mine clearance in Iraq and Syria“, Norway’s Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide (pictured) has said.

ISIL planted vast numbers of landmines and explosives in the areas they formerly controlled. These explosives pose an enormous threat to civilians. Against this backdrop, Norway has increased its support for mine clearance in Iraq and Syria from NOK 110 million in 2017 to NOK 154 million [$19 million] in 2018.

Last summer the city of Mosul in Iraq was liberated from ISIL, and last autumn the global coalition liberated the city of Raqqa, formerly ISIL’s headquarters in Syria. According to the UN, the number of landmines and unexploded ordnance in Iraq and Syria is extreme, with 50 to 70 casualties a week in the city of Raqqa alone.

‘The human suffering caused by these explosives must be brought to an end. The situation in Raqqa and Mosul is particularly serious. A substantial share of Norway’s support for mine clearance is being channelled to these two cities,’ said Ms Eriksen Søreide.

Norway is one of the five largest donors to international mine clearance efforts. In 2017 Norway provided a total of NOK 312 million for this work. Activities supported by Norway include mapping hazardous areas, training the local population in risk management, and clearing landmines and unexploded ordnance so that land and buildings can be used again.

(Source: Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

(Picture Credit: Torbjorn Kjosvold, Norwegian Armed Forces)

Iraq Britain Business Council and Iraq’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research sign Memorandum of Understanding

The Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Iraq’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research at the IBBC Cumberland Lodge Retreat on 7 July.

The memorandum was signed by Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, President of IBBC and H.E. Dr Abdul Razzaq Al-Issa, Iraqi Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research. The singing was supported and witnessed by Ambassador Jon Wilks CMG, Her Majesty’s A mbassador to the Republic of Iraq and Dr Nahi Al-Rikabi, the Iraqi Cultural Attaché to London.

The memorandum details the commitment of both parties to work together in a constructive and progressive way to further enhance links between Iraqi and UK institutions of higher education.

The partnership is a further boost to the IBBC’s efforts to support initiatives between UK universities and Iraqi institutions of higher education.

IBBC has three British Universities within the council; Bath Spa University, University of Northampton and University of Leicester, who are all active within Iraq and aiming to increase their activities in the country. Mosul University has also recently joined the Council as IBBC continue to expand its Education & Heritage Sector Table.

(Source: IBBC)

One year after the events of Mosul ended in July 2017, the Iraqi Red Crescent teams continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the residents inside the city or to the displaced who face some challenges to return to their homes after their homes have been damaged.

After thousands of houses were destroyed, roads and bridges were damaged, and water station, as well as sanitation facilities, were destroyed by heavy fighting, the Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) in cooperation with its partners in the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement installs water purification stations and installs (65) water tanks with a capacity of 5000 liters distributed in the old neighborhoods of Mosul.

Relief official for the Iraqi Red Crescent Society, Haidar Kassem, says:

“The IRCS teams distribute more than (350,000) liters of water per day covering Mosul’s old city and this is done by transporting water from the water station in the Ghazalani area by IRCS water truck and then all tanks which were distributed in the old city neighborhoods will be filled”.

The IRCS teams continue to provide the needs of the families in their residential areas and the displaced in the camps such as the distribution of food parcels for families in their residential areas as well as provide hot food meals for the families in the displacement camps not to mention provide some special needs of children and women.

“IRCS Health teams continue to receive and treat more 130 cases per day and specialist medical staff give medicine to the patient in the Health center and mobile clinic of the IRCS.

(Source: IRCS)