Reconstruction and assistance

Development Minister visits Iraq

Federal Minister Gerd Müller with the Prime Minister of the Kurdish regional government, Nechirvan Barzani, in Erbil, Northern Iraq

Press release of 02.02.2017 |

BERLIN – Federal Minister Gerd Müller is on a two-day visit to Iraq to discuss reconstruction and economic support for the region. The main focus will be on seeing what can be done for people from the battle-scarred city of Mosul. Hundreds of thousands of people have already fled their homes to escape the fighting, with most of them finding refuge in emergency camps.

The Development Ministry is providing the suffering refugees with water and is helping to deliver medical care. The relief measures include bringing in additional ambulances and water tankers to distribute water, and handing out winter clothes. The assistance that the Development Ministry is providing for people in and around Mosul amounts to about 50 million euros.

Besides political meetings, the Minister will also visit a refugee camp, where he will open a training centre for manual trades that will be helpful in preparing for the reconstruction process. German support has also helped create an additional 100,000 school places for refugee children. 

Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development: "Half the refugees are children and young people. We must not allow a new lost generation to emerge. That is why Germany is creating school places and training opportunities for hundreds of thousands of people in the region of Kurdistan. The people want to return to their home towns once the war is over. That is why we are specifically investing in the reconstruction, in order to give people prospects for the future."

The activities being carried out under German development cooperation are helping to restore stability and rebuild what has been destroyed in the areas liberated from IS control, so that it will be possible for people to return safely. In central Iraq, for example, German support has made it possible for some 130,000 people to return to their home town of Tikrit. Since March 2015, more than 220,000 people have returned to the former IS stronghold of Fallujah following the liberation of the city. The returning refugees are being given practical support to help them rebuild their houses and flats, including through cash-for-work programmes. Altogether the BMZ has so far created about 60,000 jobs in the crisis regions in and around Syria and in Iraq through cash-for-work programmes.

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