Baghdad, Nov 2 (efe-epa).- Around 58,000 displaced Iraqi families returned home as 35 camps have been shut down across the country amid a government campaign to send those who fled during the occupation of the Islamic State back to their houses, authorities announced on Monday.
These families have returned to the “liberated provinces” spokesperson for the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers Haider Mayid was cited as saying by state-run news agency INA.
Mayid made the remarks during a ceremony held in Baghdad on Monday to mark the 20th anniversary of the approval by the United Nations’ Security Council of the Resolution 1325 on women and peace and security.
During the event, the secretary general of the Iraqi Council of Ministers, Hamid al Ghazzi, highlighted “the importance of prioritizing the important projects that contributes in the speedy return of the displaced”.
Iraq’s migration minister Evan Faeq Jabro launched last week a national campaign to promote the voluntary return of the displaced people to their original areas of residence and the closure of camps” in compliance with directives of Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kazemi.
The first phase of the plan aims for the closure of 15 camps over three months, with as many to be closed during the second stage in the provinces of Saladin, Nineveh, Anbar and Kirkuk.
The third phase contemplates returning the displaced to the provinces of Erbil and Dohuk located in the northern Iraqi region of Kurdistan.
A total of 1.3 million people have been forced out of their homes, which represents nearly five percent of the Iraq population, according to the United Nations’ Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).
The Islamic State terror organization held vast territories in Iraq between 2014 and late 2017, when the extremists were territorially defeated.
However, the terror group’s attacks have increased, targeting both civilians and security forces. EFE-EPA