Iraq: Migrant Camps

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 1st December 2020.

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Photo of Lord Hylton Lord Hylton Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to discuss the proposed closure of camps for displaced people in seven Iraqi provinces with the government of Iraq; and what assessment they have made of the impact of these closures on homelessness during (1) the winter, and (2) the COVID-19 pandemic.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

The UK is concerned by the recent consolidation and closure of camps for internally displaced people in Iraq. The speed of these camp closures makes it very challenging to ensure people are able to return home voluntarily, safely and in a sustainable manner. These challenges are exacerbated by the winter, COVID-19, and the economic crisis.

The UK is coordinating advocacy efforts with international partners to raise our concerns at the highest levels with the Government of Iraq and slow the rate of unplanned camp closures. Since 2014 the UK has provided £272 million in humanitarian support to millions of vulnerable Iraqis including shelter kits, upgrades to camps and household items. The UK is also the largest donor to the Iraq Humanitarian Fund which will respond to the most urgent needs including both shelter and COVID related support for displaced persons as they face harsh winter conditions.

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