13 June 2014
The Iraqi Red Crescent is helping thousands of people made homeless by fighting in Iraq.
An escalation of violence in recent days has seen armed groups reach several major cities in the country including Mosul, Samara, Baquba, and Ramadi.
Accurate figures of casualties are unavailable, but reports claim hundreds have been killed, while the number of displaced people is estimated to be as high as half a million.
The Iraqi Red Crescent Society has called upon all its resources to provide food, water and shelter for families displaced from Mosul to the northern provinces.
Thousands flee Mosul
In just two days, more than 300,000 people have entered the provinces of Erbil and Dohuk, according to the Iraqi Red Crescent Society, and more than 32,000 displaced people from Mosul had to sleep in the open.
The assistant to the secretary general of the Iraqi Red Crescent Society, Mohammad Alkhozai, said: “Our volunteers are working tirelessly to assist the displaced people located in Erbil and Dohuk governorate.
“We have provided more than 60,000 hot meals in these two governorates. Iraqi Red Crescent teams in the Dohuk and Erbil have distributed food aid and water for more than 20,000 displaced citizens in the past two days as well as provided tents in some areas.”
Families are taking refuge in schools, with relatives, in mosques, tents and incomplete building constructions. They are in dire need of food, water and shelter.
Mr Alkhozai also expressed concern about the humanitarian situation within the city of Mosul due to the lack of electricity and health services, which are inaccessible or damaged.
Checkpoints between northern provinces have become overcrowded with vehicles as thousands of people seek to cross into Kurdistan region. The overcrowding is making it difficult for aid to reach patients.
There are 188 national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies around the world, each helping vulnerable people in their own countries and calling on international support when needed.