Iraq

Iraq: Caritas network braces to help up to 500,000 in war

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The Caritas network in the Middle East, including Caritas of Iraq, has activated its emergency plan to assist civilian victims of the war.
The emergency plan is being coordinated under the direction of Faiq Bourachi, Caritas Iraq liaison Officer.

"The Caritas network is working under the assumption of attending to the needs of a population estimated to be between 200,000 and 500,000 of displaced persons, both within Iraq as well as in neighboring countries," Mr Bourachi said.

Caritas centres are being set up to provide medical, food and shelter relief at points where an influx of refugees is expected.

The Caritas international network is working closely with the Caritas agencies in the Middle East - Caritas Lebanon, Turkey, Syria, Jordan and Caritas in Iran - to cope with the emergency situation.

"Caritas Australia as a member of the network has supported Caritas Iraq to set up medical clinics to operate as first aid centres during the conflict," said Jack de Groot, Caritas Australia's National Director.

Caritas Iraq with the Iraqi Red Crescent Society and the Iraq Red Cross has equipped 40 medical centres with needed medical equipment and has trained 42 doctors and 220 volunteers in emergency medical responses.

"The training, equipment and supplies will allow Caritas Iraq to offer life-saving care to innocent civilians caught up in the conflict," said Mr de Groot.

For further information please contact:

Katie Ritchie, Caritas Australia
Phone: (02) 9956 5799
Mobile: 0417 284 831
Email: katier@caritas.org.au