Baghdad, April 1: United Nation secretary general Antonio Guterres on Friday appealed for more financial aid and international solidarity for the people of Mosul after he visited several camps for Iraqis displaced while fighting between the Islamic State terrorist group and Iraqi security forces backed by a US-led coalition.
Notably, UN chief Guterres during a visit to the Hasan Sham Camp in Mosul after seeing the conditions said, "We don't have the resources that are necessary to support these people and we don't have the international solidarity that is needed." "Unfortunately, our programme here is only funded at eight percent; that shows how limited our resources are," he said.
Guterres further said that there were not enough resources available to provide acceptable living conditions for the people of Mosul or for the reconciliation efforts that will need to follow when the city has been fully recaptured. Guterres said that protecting civilians was an “absolute priority” as Iraqi forces continue to seize back most of the country’s second-largest city from IS in a massive six-month campaign, backed by US-led coalition airpower.
However, Guterres is on the second day of a visit to Iraq, after meeting top officials, including Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, on Thursday. Guterres also called for the protection of civilians to be the absolute priority, after the battle for Mosul resulted in numerous civilian deaths and widespread privation.
Notably, the UN itself has said earlier this month that around 600,000 civilians were still in west Mosul, 400,000 of them trapped in siege-like conditions in the Old City. The Iraqi government has sought to blame the jihadists for the deaths.