IOM Iraq: Addressing the Syrian Crisis
In December 2013, due to Japan’s growing concern regarding the serious humanitarian situation facing Syrian refugees, the Government of Japan responded to a request from IOM and announced that they would be providing 800 tents and 10,000 jerry cans to Syrian refugees in Iraq. In addition to its donation to IOM Iraq, the Government of Japan provided 1,000 blankets and 10,000 sleeping mats to IOM Turkey. The donations to IOM Iraq and IOM Turkey are valued at 136 million yen, approximately 1.3 million USD. The handover ceremony was held in Erbil on 16 December in the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) Headquarters. At the official ceremony, Mr. Nobuo Kishi, Senior Vice Foreign Minister of Japan, presented a certificate to Mr. Mike Pillinger, IOM Iraq’s Chief of Mission, marking the donation of the relief items. Mr. Falah Mustafa, the KRG Foreign Minister, Mr. Nawzad Hadi, Governor of Erbil, and other representatives of the local government and international community attended the ceremony. On the day of the ceremony, the relief Items were air-lifted from the Secretariat of the International Peace Cooperation Headquarter’s warehouse in Dubai and handed over to IOM Iraq in Erbil. IOM Iraq, in coordination with the local authorities and UNHCR, erected almost 500 tents in the camps across the Kurdistan region and distributed over 4,000 jerry cans. Remaining relief items will be delivered to the most vulnerable families before the end of January 2014.