Wednesday, January 21, 2009

International Organization for Migration’s Report On Displaced In Kurdistan

The situation of the displaced in the three provinces of Kurdistan, Dohuk, Irbil and Sulaymaniya, are different from the rest of the country. The stability of Kurdistan has been a draw for displaced from across the country. Professionals and manual labors alike have found jobs there. A large number of Iraqi minorities fled there. Most of the displaced in the three provinces also left their homes before the February 2006 Samarra bombing that set off the sectarian war. At the same time Kurdistan has strict restrictions on the entry of non-Kurds, and there are fears amongst officials that these refugees will upset the demographics of the region. In December 2008, the International Organization for Migration released its latest report on the displaced in Kurdistan.

The relative security of Kurdistan has led many displaced Iraqis to try to move there, but at the same time it is the hardest part of the country to gain entry into. The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is worried about Arab insurgents entering, as well as non-Kurds disrupting the Kurdish majority. The KRG also doesn’t want to take care of so many displaced families. As a result, Kurdish security forces tightly control the border. People that don’t originally come form Kurdistan must have sponsors to enter. The Kurds are especially suspicious of Arabs, but requirements are looser for minorities who are seen as victims of terrorism. Once a family has entered Kurdistan they have to go through a complicated series of offices and requirements to stay. Every three months they have to renew their residency permit. For individuals, they have to renew it every month. If they don’t they are considered illegal residents. These tight restrictions have led many displaced to hide their movements outside the region, for example to collect their food rations from their home province, out of fear that they will be caught by the authorities and expelled.

Most of Iraq’s minorities live in the north. As reported before, they have been singled out for attack since the U.S. invasion. Many have fled to Kurdistan as a result because of its safety and proximity. 22.8% of the displaced in the region are Christians for example, compared to 5% in the rest of the country.

Kurdistan also has the largest amount of pre-2006 displaced. Most of these are Kurds, Turkomen, and Christians forced out by Saddam Hussein’s Arabization policy and Anfal campaign. Over 600,000 people came to Dohuk, Irbil and Sulaymaniya before 2006 as a result.

The displaced have caused both problems, and been welcomed in the region. The refugees can strain a community by increasing demand for services, and competing for jobs. In Khabat in the Irbil district there are more than 2,000 displaced families causing problems with the health facilities and schools. There are also reports of women turning to prostitution for money, and child labor. In Dohuk there are stories of women being raped to keep their jobs. Another problem is that the displaced have to know Kurdish to get jobs. Those that have stayed longer, usually have developed some language skills, and are thus better suited to find work. At the same time, because of the better security situation there are more jobs in Kurdistan than the rest of the country. The displaced have added both skilled and unskilled labor to the regional economy. This is seen in the fact that 56.6% of the displaced surveyed had at least one family member working compared to 34.8% in the rest of the country.

The ability to receive services and assistance by the displaced has been mixed. There is little coordination between the KRG and the Ministry of Trade that runs the food rations system. In a survey 74.6% of the displaced said they don’t get any food rations at all. Less then 3% said they received food aid, compared to the 43% national average. In Irbil no displaced received any food assistance. Only 23% said they received any aid period, compared to 63% in the rest of the country. Dohuk was the exception with 57% saying they had gotten some form of aid. 66% of the displaced said they also had no access to fuel, higher than the 33% average in the rest of Iraq. People in Kurdistan also pay higher prices for fuel, which adds more strain to the displaced that often have financial difficulties. Schools are a special problem for the displaced because classes are conducted in Kurdish. Some displaced Kurds are not use to the written form of the language either. Even so, there is a very high percentage of the displaced attending schools. 62.3% of families said all their girls were going, and 73.9% said their boys were as well. Water supply and access to health care however, are better than the rest of the country for internal refugees.

Dohuk

Dohuk has the least amount of pre-2006 displaced, and the most post-2006 refugees of the three Kurdish provinces. The majority came from Baghdad 52% and Ninewa 47%. The largest amount of people came during the summer of 2006, and has since declined. There are concerns that because of economic hardships some families are turning to crime to support themselves. Services and aid are mixed there. Electricity is available for an average of six hours per day, leaving many to turn to private generators or buying power from private businesses to make up the difference. 99.1% say they have no access to fuel, higher than the 65.9% average for the region and 32.7% rate for the country. Dohuk also has the least amount of displaced people working. Only 33.5% said they had at least one family member working compared to 56.6% in Kurdistan. Refugee families do have the best access to humanitarian aid out of the region.

Statistics On The Displaced In Dohuk

Overall:
Population: 954,087
Total pre-Feb 06 displaced: 22,474 families, approx. 138,844 people
Total post-Feb 06 displaced: 17,390 families, approx 104,824 people

Background:

Religion & ethnicity of displaced:

Sunni Kurd 39.7%
Chaldean Christian 29.0%
Assyrian Christian 19.8%
Armenian Christian 3.4%
Sunni Arab 2.1%
Shiite Arab 2.0%
Turkomen Shiite 0.7%
Shiite Kurd 0.3%
Christian Kurd 0.2%
Other 0.1%

Place of origin:
Baghdad 51.79%
Ninewa 46.65%
Tamim 0.58%
Basra 0.48%
Anbar 0.32%
Muthanna 0.05%
Salahaddin 0.05%
Babil 0.03%
Diyala 0.03%
Irbil 0.03%

Reasons For Displacement:
Fear 92.8%
Violence 88.1%
Direct Threat 71.2%
Armed Conflict 33.7%
Forced From Home 7.3%
Other 0.4%

Reason For Being Targeted:

Sect 68.20%
Ethnicity 22.84%
Political opinion 18.29%
Social group 14.57%
Don’t think targeted 7.42%

Intentions of Displaced:

Integrate locally 60.2%
Return to place of origin 22.0%

Services And Employment:

Access to food rations:
Yes 2.7%
Sometimes 4.3%
Never 92.9%

Water source:
Municipal water 89.8%
Water tanks/trucks 31.9%
Others 4.7%
Wells 6.8%
Rivers, streaks, lakes 5.1%
Broken pipes 0.2%

Electricity access:
Four or more hours per day 86.4%
1-3 hours per day 8.9%
No electricity 4.7%

Fuel access:
No access 99.1%
Propane 0.6%
Benzene 0.0%
Kerosene 0.5%
Diesel 0.1%
Other 0.0%

Have been visited by health worker in last 30 days?
No 31.1%
Yes 68.5%

Employment:
At least one family member working 33.5%
No one working 66.5%

Assistance:

Sources of aid:
No aid 42.7%
Iraqi Red Crescent 23.6%
Religious group 21.0%
Relatives 19.7%
Humanitarian group 6.3%
Other government agency 14.6%
Host community 4.1%
Other 3.0%

Food aid source:
No aid 98.6%
Federal government 0.0%
Humanitarian group 0.0%
Regional government 0.0%
Religious group 0.9%
Others 0.3%

Needs:
Jobs 95%
Housing 60%
Food 50%
Other 50%
Health 20%
School 10%
Water 5%
Sanitation 1%
Legal aid 1%
Hygiene 0%

Irbil

Most of the displaced in Irbil come from Baghdad 47% and Ninewa 45%. The largest amount of people came in the beginning of 2007. Around 150 Christian families have recently fled to the Ainkawa district after they were attacked in Mosul at the end of 2008. Electricity has improved over the last six months. Families average four hours a day with three extra hours every other day. Displaced in Irbil have the worst access to humanitarian aid in the region with 92.4% saying they received no assistance compared to 76.5% in Kurdistan and 36.7% in Iraq.

Statistics On The Displaced In Dohuk

Overall: Population: 1,392,093
Total pre-Feb 06 displaced: 32,813 families, approx 196,878 people
Total post-Feb 06 displaced: 6,599 families, approx 52,007 people

Background:

Religion & ethnicity of displaced:

Sunni Kurd 39.9%
Sunni Arab 29.4%
Chaldean Christian 19.3%
Assyrian Christian 4.9%
Shiite Arab 1.4%
Armenian Christian 0.9%
Other 0.4%
Christian Kurd 0.2%
Sabean Mandean 0.1%
Christian Arab 0.1%

Place of origin:

Baghdad 47.11%
Ninewa 45.12%
Tamim 2.4%
Diyala 2.08%
Anbar 0.93%
Salahaddin 0.63%
Basra 0.26%
Babil 0.15%
Muthanna 0.07%
Qadisiyah 0.07%
Karbala 0.06%
Najaf 0.04%
Maysan 0.04%

Reasons for displacement:
Fear 97.6%
Violence 53.4%
Direct Threat 9.9%
Armed Conflict 0.3%
Other 0.1%

Reason for being targeted:

Sect 59.98%
Don’t think targeted 22.84%
Ethnicity 17.27%
Social group 3.98%
Political opinion 0.13%

Intentions of displaced:

Integrate locally 18.3%
Return to place of origin 62.5%

Services And Employment:

Access to food rations:
Yes 14.5%
Sometimes 27.2%
Never 57.6%

Water source:
Municipal water 97.7%
Water tanks/trucks 1.3%
Others 0.2%
Wells 6.80.2%

Electricity access:
Four or more hours per day 98.8%
1-3 hours per day 0.0%
No electricity 0.1%

Fuel Access:
No access 68.1%
Propane 29.4%
Benzene 23.2%
Kerosene 4.5%
Diesel 0.2%
Other 0.0%

Have been visited by health worker in last 30 days?
No 73.1%
Yes 25.3%

Assistance:

Sources of aid:
No aid 92.4%
Iraqi Red Crescent 0.1%
Religious group 4.00%
Relatives 0.1%
Humanitarian group 2.2%
Other government agency 0.0%
Host community 0.0%
Other 0.0%

Food aid source:
No aid 98.9%
Federal government 0.0%
Humanitarian group 0.0%
Regional government 0.0%
Religious group 0.0%
Others 0.0%

Needs:
Jobs 90.9%
Housing 97.9%
Food 2.8%
Other 0.7%
Health 0.1%
School 28.2%
Water 0.0%
Sanitation 0.0%
Legal aid 25%
Hygiene 0%

Sulaymaniya

Most displaced in Sulaymaniya come from Baghdad 46% and Diyala 45%. The biggest surge in families to the province came during the summer of 2007. Of the three Kurdish provinces, Sulaymaniya averages the most electricity at 9 to 10 hours per day. That’s expected to go up to twelve hours when a new power station opens. It also has the best access to fuel in the region with 60% of the displaced saying they could obtain one form or another, but it is still below the national average.

Statistics For the Displaced In Sulaymaniya

Overall:
Population: 1,715,585
Total pre-Feb 06 displaced: 50,465 families, approx. 302,790 people
Total post-Feb 06 displaced: 14,585 families, approx. 80,935 people

Background:

Religion & ethnicity of displaced:

Sunni Arab 62.7%
Sunni Kurd 22.4%
Shiite Arab 10.5%
Shiite Kurd 2.7%
Sabean Mandean 0.3%
Chaldean Christian 0.2%
Assyrian Christian 0.1%
Other 0.1%
Christian Arab 0.1%

Origin of origin:

Baghdad 46.12%
Diyala 45.92%
Anbar 2.88%
Ninewa 1.88%
Salahaddin 0.95%
Tamim 0.67%
Basra 0.51%
Babil 0.40%
Wasit 0.24%
Dhi Qar 0.11%
Sulaymaniyah 0.11%
Karbala 0.07%
Muthanna 0.04%

Reasons for displacement:

Fear 90.0%
Violence 88.0%
Armed Conflict 52.7%
Direct Threat 46.2%
Other 6.3%
Forced From Home 3.8%

Reason for being targeted:

Sect 78.53%
Don’t think targeted 18.85%
Ethnicity 10.46%
Political opinion 6.28%
Social group 3.96%

Intentions of displaced:

Integrate locally 25.9%
Return to place of origin 65.7%

Services And Employment:

Access to food rations:
Yes 11.8%
Sometimes 9.7%
Never 78.5%

Water source:
Municipal water 77.0%
Water tanks/trucks 5.1%
Others 19.3%
Wells 3.2%
Rivers, streaks, lakes 0.2%

Electricity access:
Four or more hours per day 60.4%
1-3 hours per day 35.2%
No electricity 4.4%

Fuel access:
No access 41.3%
Propane 58.6%
Benzene 1.0%
Kerosene 15.6%
Diesel 0.7%
Other 0.2%

Have been visited by health worker in last 30 days?
No 79.8%
Yes 19.8%

Assistance:

Sources of aid:
No aid 84.0%
Iraqi Red Crescent 7.5%
Religious group 1.1%
Relatives 0.1%
Humanitarian group 5.5%
Other government agency 1.7%
Host community 4.3%
Other 0.4%

Food aid source:
No aid 94.7%
Federal government 2.8%
Humanitarian group 1.5%
Regional government 1.1%
Religious group 0.5%
Others 0.9%

Needs:
Jobs 44%
Housing 16.7%
Food 85.8%
Other 81.2%
Health 1.3%
School 32.3%
Water 0.7%
Sanitation 1.0%
Legal aid 2.2%
Hygiene 0.5%

SOURCES

International Organization for Migration, “Dahuk, Erbil & Sulaymaniyah, Governorate Profiles Post-February 2006 IDP Needs Assessments,” December 2008

No comments:

Hikma’s Calls For National Protests In Iraq Fizzle

HIkma protesters in Najaf (Al Mirbad) Ammar Hakim’s Hikma party went into the opposition in June 2019. This was part of growing critici...