Iraq News
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Iraq records return of over 200,000 displaced families to Ninawa

By Khalid al-Taie

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Internally displaced persons (IDPs) apply with the Ministry of Migration and Displacement to return to their areas of origin in Ninawa province. [Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Migration and Displacement office in Ninawa]

The number of displaced families who have returned to Ninawa province since it was liberated from the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) currently stands at 201,080, the Ministry of Migration and Displacement said Monday (July 23rd).

Iraqi security forces facilitated the return of 123,396 families, while 77,684 have been returned by the ministry’s departments, said Ali Jahankir, assistant director of the ministry's Branch Affairs Department.

The families have returned to six major Ninawa cities: Mosul, al-Qayyarah, al-Hamdaniya, Tal Afar, Sinjar and Makhmour.

"The city of Mosul has the highest return rate, with a total of 71,737 families who have gone back to the western part of the city and 58,187 families to its eastern part," said Jahankir.

The voluntary return of families is continuing uninterrupted, he said.

The ministry's data on returning citizens "indicates a new decline in the number of displaced families from Ninawa residing in camps and shelters or in areas in the Kurdish region", he added.

A total of 40,997 families from Mosul are still in displacement, Jahankir said, adding that they are distributed among 13 camps in Ninawa province, most notably the camps of al-Jadaa, Hamam al-Aalil, Hassan Sham and al-Salamiyah.

The number of returnees has picked up pace since the liberation of Mosul last year, he said, with the resumption of public services.

In any area where basic services, such as water and electricity, are rehabilitated, the local population begins to return gradually, he noted.

"Western Mosul was the most affected by the terrorist operations and the war, especially in the Old City," he said, "but services are improving and we are recording an increase in its population’s return."

The ministry provides emergency food and relief assistance to any returning family and helps any institution that works to provide support to returnees and help them resettle in their original areas, he said.

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