Secretary Kerry Visits Baghdad, Announces new U.S. Humanitarian Assistance

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is currently in the midst of a multi-country trip, traveling to Manama, Bahrain, Baghdad, Iraq, and Hiroshima, Japan. Today Secretary Kerry is visiting Baghdad to meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, and Council of Representatives Speaker Saleem al-Jabouri.

In a press conference at Embassy Baghdad during his trip, Secretary Kerry thanked Iraqi Security Forces and the Iraqi people for their valiant efforts to combat Daesh. He also recognized the U.S. military and coalition partners who have joined together to fight Daesh and improve the capability of the Iraqi Security Forces. He said, "while many battles still lie ahead, the strong ties between the local forces on the ground and the global anti-Daesh coalition are turning the tide. Daesh is getting weaker by the day, and the coalition strategy of supporting the Iraqis with training, with equipment and airstrikes is working."

Secretary Kerry then underscored that as more territory is liberated by Daesh, the international community must increase its support for the safe and voluntary return of civilians to their homes. Kerry explained this was a message he raised in recent meetings with representatives of  the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and one President Obama would reinforce in his upcoming engagements with international leaders, including at the G7 Summit.

Secretary Kerry acknowledged, "There’s a terrible level of destruction and devastation in many of these communities, much more than people thought might have existed -– buildings destroyed, electricity destroyed, infrastructure that doesn’t work anymore. And so in addition to the humanitarian aid the United States is providing to Iraq, we are also contributing to the Funding Facility for Immediate Stabilization. And this program, led jointly by the UNDP and the Government of Iraq, has facilitated the return of over 100,000 Iraqis to their homes in Tikrit. And it is embarking on the difficult challenge now of clearing Ramadi of land mines and IEDs so that its population can return home as well."

The United States will provide approximately $155 million in additional humanitarian assistance to displaced and conflict-affected Iraqis within Iraq and throughout the region. The U.S. humanitarian assistance, provided from the Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) will help to provide for the urgent needs of millions of vulnerable individuals. By working with UN and international partners, this U.S. humanitarian contribution will provide immediate, life-saving supplies to families on the move as they flee conflict, reproductive health and newborn care services to camp and non-camp populations, services for survivors of gender-based violence, and investments in the coordination of humanitarian assistance to provide better programming and efficiency.

Before opening for questions, Secretary Kerry concluded his remarks by stating, "I am convinced that together, we will not only defeat Daesh, but we’re going to help the people of this country to be able to recover and to go forward and to live a life in peace and tranquility, which is what they desire."

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Patrick W.
Maryland, USA
April 10, 2016
" I hope the people of Iraq can move forward and live in peace, tranquility, prosperity, and security in their own homes one day ". I think that's what Secretary Kerry' s post says .
Secretary Kerry Sits With Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari Amid Meetings in Baghdad. [State Department Photo]
Posted by DipNote Bloggers
April 8, 2016


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