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Middle East: Internally Displaced People

Department for International Development written question – answered on 18th February 2019.

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Photo of David Evennett David Evennett Conservative, Bexleyheath and Crayford

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps her Department is taking to support internally displaced people in (a) Syria and (b) Iraq.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt Minister of State (Department for International Development) (Jointly with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office), Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The ongoing conflict in Syria has caused immense human suffering, displacing over 6 million people within Syria. The UK has committed £2.71 billion in response to the Syria Crisis since 2012.

We monitor displacement and maintain close contact with other donors and humanitarian partners to ensure our programmes are supporting those most in need, including internally displaced people (IDPs). In September 2018, DFID provided an additional £32 million for Northern Syria to provide essential services such as shelter and clean water for those in need, including the up to 1.4 million IDPs in Idlib. We also fund the life-saving provision of water for thousands of IDPs at the Rukban camp and are supporting efforts to help those affected by hazardous winter conditions at Al-Hol camp. But our efforts are hampered by access problems caused by Assad’s regime and violence on the ground.

In Iraq, DFID has committed £252.5 million in humanitarian support since 2014. This includes an additional £10 million which I announced during my visit to Baghdad last month. UK aid has been a lifeline for IDPs and others in need. The UK has provided healthcare services to 4.1 million people, sanitation and safe water to 2.1 million people and food to over 400,000 people.

The UK has also committed over £47 million to directly improve conditions in areas liberated from Daesh in Iraq, including an additional £6.9 million which I announced during my recent visit. UK aid is having real impact. For example, it enabled the repair of a water treatment plant serving 300,000 people in East Mosul, the rehabilitation of 2,000 homes in West Mosul and the reopening of 38 schools across Northern Iraq. This action makes it easier for IDPs to return safely.

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