I am deeply concerned for the safety of civilians behind ISIL lines in western Mosul.
Although the UN is not present in the areas where fighting is occurring, we have received very disturbing reports of families being shut inside booby-trapped homes and of children being deliberately targeted by snipers. Families in the city still lack access to clean water and medicine and many have only limited access to food.
I am extremely concerned for the safety of up to 1.5 million people living in Mosul who may be impacted by military operations to retake the city from ISIL. Families are at extreme risk of being caught in cross-fire or targeted by snipers. Tens of thousands of Iraqi girls, boys, women and men may be under siege or held as human shields. Thousands may be forcibly expelled or trapped between the fighting lines. Children, women, the elderly and disabled will be particularly vulnerable.
New York, 21 September 2016
Excellencies, distinguished delegates,
Thank you to all the distinguished representatives from governments and Member States,
UN agencies, non-governmental organizations, and guests for attending this event on the humanitarian crisis in Iraq. I also thank the co-hosts, Iraq, the United States, the EU, the ICRC, the OIC, and our OCHA colleagues, for coming together in support of the Iraqi people at this critical juncture.
I am deeply concerned by the plight of civilians trapped in the besieged Iraqi city of Fallujah, where a major military operation against ISIL is taking place. An estimated 50,000 civilians, including at least 20,000 children, are unable to leave. They face grim conditions, including shortages of food, clean drinking water and medicines.
(Erbil, 9 June 2015) – Stephen O’Brien, the new Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs (USG) and Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC), called for greater assistance for millions of people across Iraq following a two-day visit to the country.
WHO: UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Stephen O’Brien
WHAT: Mission to Iraq
WHEN: 7-9 June 2015
WHERE: Baghdad, Erbil
UN Humanitarian Chief Stephen O’Brien is scheduled to visit Iraq from 7 to 9 June 2015.
The Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator will review progress in the humanitarian response and is expected to meet displaced families and senior Iraqi and Kurdish officials.