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Iraq has suffered from a succession of political crises, wars, and series of attacks over the last 35 years. The majority of victims are civilians.
Since 1979 when Saddam Hussein took power, Iraq has experienced three murderous wars, a series of bloody repressions including those of the Kurds and Shi'ites, and a trade embargo lasting over ten years. In April 2003, a coalition led by the United States and the United Kingdom toppled Saddam Hussein's regime. This third Gulf war officially ended on the 1st May 2003, but a string of terrorist attacks and political crises ensued. Between March 2003 and January 2012, 250,000 civilians were affected by armed violence. Iraq is considered to be one of the countries in the world most severely contaminated by landmines and cluster munitions.
In June 2014, attacks by armed groups caused significant population displacements. According to the International Organization for Migration, 2.5 million people have taken refuge in the regions in the north of the country, including 980,000 in Iraqi Kurdistan.
The first estimates by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees indicate that 40% of these refugees meet the vulnerability criteria and that the health services in these regions have been pushed to the limit in terms of capacity. Handicap International has been working in Iraqi Kurdistan since 1991 supporting displaced persons with injuries or disabilities.
The aim is to meet their specific needs and ensure that they have access to humanitarian aid. Handicap International also supports other organisations - NGOs, local and regional authorities - to ensure that the specific needs of people with disabilities and vulnerable people are taken into account in the humanitarian response.
Download the latest publications
- Advocacy briefing - Humanitarian Response: how to include everyone? (2015) (pdf, 687.28 KB)
- Advocacy briefing - Gender and disability (2015) (pdf, 282.71 KB)
- Advocacy briefing - Education for All? (2015) (pdf, 1.68 MB)
- Advocacy briefing - A human right to health (2015) (pdf, 792.64 KB)