Iraq - Complex Emergency Fact Sheet #3, Fiscal Year (FY) 2018
• IOM reports nearly 460,700 IDP returns in December
• USAID Counselor Thomas Staal visits Iraq to meet with representatives of ethnic and religious minority groups
• Relief organizations distribute more than 487,000 USAID-supported RRM kits in 2017
• Checkpoint closures continue to constrain humanitarian access in northern Iraq
• More than 460,700 displaced Iraqis returned to areas of origin and other locations in December, according to U.S. Government (USG) partner the International Organization for Migration (IOM). More than 3.2 million returns have occurred since 2014, while approximately 2.6 million Iraqis remain displaced, IOM reports. Relief actors have expressed concern regarding the accelerated rate of returns, given the lack of a formal returns strategy and assistance package, as well as the likelihood of involuntary returns. State/PRM partner the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reports that forced returns affected more than 1,300 households in Anbar, Baghdad, and Salah al-Din governorates in November and December.
• In early December, USAID Counselor Thomas H. Staal visited Iraq to meet with representatives of ethnic and religious minority groups. During the visit, Counselor Staal highlighted USG development assistance to persecuted Iraqi minorities and humanitarian responsiveness to the needs of conflict-affected populations, particularly in Ninewa Governorate.
• Relief organizations provided nearly 10,700 USAID-supported Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) kits—including food, hygiene items, and safe drinking water—to populations across Anbar, Erbil, Kirkuk, Ninewa, and Salah al-Din governorates in December. In total, humanitarian organizations provided approximately 487,200 USAID-supported RRM kits to conflict-affected households in Iraq in 2017.