EU donates 2.8 mln USD to emergency reproductive health services in Iraq

Source: Xinhua| 2019-06-17 20:33:15|Editor: xuxin
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BAGHDAD, June 17 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) said on Monday that EU has donated 2.8 million U.S. dollars to support humanitarian efforts of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Iraq.

A statement by UNAMI said the new funding will help "UNFPA to reach over 100,000 women and girls with life-saving emergency obstetric care and emergency supplies, including support to 23 health facilities in the central and western part of Iraq."

According to the statement, while nearly four million displaced Iraqis have returned to their homes following the liberation from Islamic State (IS) group, more than 1.5 million Iraqi individuals remain in desperate need of humanitarian assistance, including protection and reproductive health.

"Ensuring that those displaced by fighting have access to medical humanitarian assistance, such as reproductive health services and assistance to victims of gender-based violence, remains a priority for the EU in Iraq," the statement quoted Christos Stylianides, the European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, as saying.

For his part, UNFPA Representative to Iraq Oluremi Sogunro said "the impact of the war in Iraq continues to take a devastating toll on the population, especially women and girls in hard-to-reach areas and camps for the internally displaced."

He praised the contribution by the EU, saying it "will allow us to help hundreds of thousands of women and girls in need of these life-saving interventions across the country," according to the statement.

The EU has been a vital contributor to UNFPA's reproductive health and gender-based violence interventions since 2015, with total donations of about 26.4 million dollars, it added.

On June 2014, IS militants made a significant blitzkrieg and seized large territories in the predominantly Sunni provinces in northern and western Iraq, pushing millions of Iraqis to leave their homes. However, many of the displaced people returned to their homes after the security forces, backed by international coalition, fully defeated IS militants across the country in late 2017.