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Iraqis shelter in Mosques and classrooms as conflict continues

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13 October 2014

Eight children stand outside

Iraqis forced from their homes by violence are turning to schools, places of worship and unfinished buildings for shelter.

While some are staying with relatives or renting rooms, a growing proportion of those fleeing end up in less secure accommodation. Across Iraq, more than 1.7million people have been forced to leave their homes.

The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has brought life-saving aid including food, water and blankets to hundreds of thousands of people caught up in the crisis.

Crisis hits education for almost a million children

New research by the Institute of Migration found 19 per cent of people who have fled since August are housed in religious buildings, 17 per cent in schools and 17 per cent in unfinished buildings. Others live in large camps or smaller tented settlements.

The UN reports that more than 2,000 schools are occupied across the country – disrupting lessons for 850,000 children.

Red Cross and Red Crescent support continues

Those giving Red Cross and Red Crescent support include more than 4,000 Iraqi Red Crescent Society Volunteers. The help has included deliveries of medical care and supplies, including polio vaccinations. In Dohuk, a mobile kitchen is serving 10,000 people a day.

British Red Cross disaster response manager Ben Webster said: “While the headlines are all about military action, we’re focusing on the terrible crisis faced by the Iraqi people. Thanks to our supporters, we’re giving vital help to those caught up in the fighting.”


News from Iraq

The Red Cross is ready to start providing humanitarian aid to people expected to flee their homes in the wake of fighting in Mosul, which started this morning.

The Red Cross is providing essential food and medical aid to support thousands of people who have fled fighting in Fallujah, Iraq.

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