Over 3 million Iraqis displaced by conflict: UN

The number of Iraqis internally displaced by the conflict is now over 3.1 million people, UN Deputy Spokesperson Farhan Haq said on Tuesday. 

The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that fighting in Anbar Governorate has caused the new displacement of nearly 300,000 people from Ramadi district since April, Haq told a daily briefing here. 

Most of the Anbar Governorate, western Iraq, is seized by the Islamic State (IS) militants. 

The Iraqi security forces have been fighting for months to retake key cities and towns in the province. OCHA reported that many people have been displaced multiple times since the crisis began in January last year and they need food, water, shade and other shelter, and basic household items. 

"Shade and water are particularly critical, due to rising temperatures and threat of dehydration," said Haq. 

However, funding for humanitarian operations is rapidly becoming exhausted, noted Haq, saying the appeal for 2015 is over 90 percent unfunded, which is causing the shutdown or scaling back of programs in health, emergency water and sanitation, and dramatic reductions in food rations for displaced people. 

The security situation in Iraq has drastically deteriorated since June 2014 when bloody clashes broke out between security forces and IS militants. 

UN Assistance Mission for Iraq reported last week that, from Jan. 1, 2014 through to the end of April 2015, at least 14,947 civilians were killed and 29,189 were wounded in the armed conflict across the country.
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