UNICEF Iraq Monthly Humanitarian Situation Report, October 2018

Situation Report
Originally published



• Between September and October 2018, 772 teachers or education personnel were trained on improved teaching techniques for Arabic, English, maths and science, delivery of PSS in the classroom, and positive discipline methods.

• In October, UNICEF-supported learning materials for the new 2018-2019 school year reached 43,287 children. A total 237,318 children received materials since January 2018.

• UNICEF continues to improve access for school-children and conflictaffected communities to safe water and sanitation services. As of October, 16 rehabilitations to WASH facilities in schools have been completed, improving access to facilities for an estimated 6,318 school-aged children (2,723 girls), and 8 rehabilitations in Primary Healthcare Centres have been completed, (eight in October), improving access for an estimated 14,885 returnees (6,996 children, 3,568 girls).

• In Ninewa, throughout October UNICEF provided safe water through trucking to 43,592 individuals in 15 Old City neighbourhoods, the area hardest hit by conflict in 2017. In parallel, UNICEF and partners completed rehabilitation of three of a planned 22 water networks, improving more sustainable water supply for 21,000 returnees.

• In October, 8,244 community members (3,359 women, 2,291 girls, 1,049 boys, 1,545 men) participated in awareness-raising activities aimed at changing social norms that underpin Gender-Based Violence.

4 million children in need out of 8.7 million people affected (OCHA, HRP 2018)

1.86 million internally displaced people (IDP)

4.11 million people returned to newly accessible areas (IOM, Displacement Tracking Matrix, January 2014 to 31 October 2018)

Target population in 2018

Rapid Response: 1,030,000 IDPs

WASH: 1.3 million people

Education: 450,000 children

Health: 1.2 million children (polio)

Child Protection: 186,300 children and caregivers

UNICEF Appeal 2018 US$ 101.2 million

Funding Status+ US $ 98.2 million

Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs

The pace of return in Iraq has slowed, with average monthly rates reduced from 7.3 per cent in 2017 to 2.9 per cent in 2018 . Remaining IDPs are at risk of protracted displacement and cannot, or choose not, to return due to safety concerns, lack of housing and livelihoods, absence of basic services and ethnoreligious tensions. More than 4.1 million people, including over 2.1 million children, have now returned to their homes, while more than 1.8 million people (900,000 children) remain displaced across the country. Around 30 per cent of families are still displaced in camps, with 70 per cent in non-camp settings including nearly eight per cent in critical shelter arrangements . Of those in camps, 79 per cent are in Ninewa (51 per cent of the total displaced population) and Dahuk (27 per cent). Between January and October 2018, the returnee population has increased by more than 893,200 individuals (38,310 people in October) , while the cumulative total of returnees is 4.1 million individuals. The highest rates of return in 2018 are recorded in Ninewa (38.7 per cent of total returnees) and Anbar (31.2 per cent).

A small number of governorates, among them Anbar, Kirkuk, Ninewa, and Salah al Din, continue to present a complex picture of displacement in camp and non-camp areas, diverse returnee and host community needs, and continued movement of populations.

As an indication of the scale of movement still taking place, between January and September 15,630 families (approximately 94,000 individuals, around 47,000 children) were recorded entering IDP camps in Ninewa. Around 57 per cent of these arrivals were reported to be secondary displacement movements . Major reasons for secondary displacement continue to be economic hardship compounded by limited or no access to adequate shelter due to damaged houses in areas of origin.

In recent surveys in formal and informal sites, significant numbers of IDP households indicated no intention to return to areas of origin in the coming 12 months. Given this data, it seems likely that the current caseload of 1.86 million IDPs will remain relatively static well into 2019. Damage to property, security concerns, and lack of basic services were cited as the top reasons for not returning to places of origin.

In relation to potential camp consolidation that have been under discussion for a number of months, in October humanitarian leadership in Iraq maintained there were too many variables at present to establish a single timeframe for consolidation, and proposed an approach based on balancing of security concerns, humanitarian considerations, and Iraq’s legal obligations under national and international law.

In October, small increases in cases of Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD) have been recorded in Basrah and Ninewa governorates, attributed to challenges caused by damaged water and sanitation infrastructure, absence of adequate health services (mainly in Ninewa) and increased water salinity/scarcity (in Basrah). Conversely the outbreak curve mapping of gastrointestinal (GI) infections in Basrah indicate a decrease in October compared to September, partially due to slight improvement in water supply and quality in certain districts, increased public awareness of proper water treatment and storage, and improvements in case definition and recording by the Directorate of Health (DoH). It is hoped the onset of rainy season will reduce demand for irrigation water and increase flow downstream to southern governorates. On 26 October floods, caused by heavy rain, hit 15 villages in Raparin area (Rania and Pishdar districts) in Sulaymaniyah. Five of the 15 villages are in hard-to-access areas, presenting challenges for humanitarian access. During a mission to the area, UNICEF teams found water supply network damage in several of the affected villages; as of end-October, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is undertaking a more detailed assessment of flood-affected areas, with key findings and actions expected in November.

On 24 October, the Iraqi Parliament reviewed the new governmental programme, endorsed 14 out of 22 Cabinet Ministers, and confirmed the new Prime Minister. Of the five sovereign ministries, Finance, Foreign Affairs, and Oil were endorsed, but the ministries of Defence and Interior were not allocated by the end of the month.