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UN debris-recycling project enables IDPs return to northern Iraq

April 20, 2020 at 12:23 pm

The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and the International Organisation for Migration with support from the Government of Japan have launched a debris-recycling project in the Iraqi governorate of Kirkuk which would enable thousands of displaced persons to return to their homes.

The one-year project, which launched this month, will remove debris accumulated during the war against Daesh between 2014-2017.

Last Friday, the United Nations cited in a report Kirkuk’s Assistant Governor for Technical Affairs, Ali Humadi, as saying that “with almost 10,000 destroyed houses in Kirkuk Governorate, our priority is to enable [displaced persons] to return and rebuild their demolished homes.”

“The presence of huge volumes of debris on peoples’ properties is the main obstacle preventing the return of at least 80 per cent of cases,” he added.

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According to the report, the International Organisation for Migration in Iraq estimates that there are 60,000 internally displaced people in Kirkuk.

The Kirkuk authorities estimate that the war left 8-9 tonnes of debris; about two thirds of it consists of “concrete, blocks and stones that can be recycled, while the rest is mud bricks”.

Hassan Nassif, the head of Multaqa sub-district; south of Kirkuk said the project will help create jobs for those displaced in Kirkuk.