Baghdad, 17 November 2016 – The Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) has been able to reach communities inside Mosul for the first time, providing emergency relief supplies and first aid to families who have been trapped in the city without access to food and basic services.

The Red Crescent convoys – loaded with food baskets, winter clothes and blankets – were able to reach two districts of Mosul along newly secured roads, almost one month after the military operation to retake the city began. This is some of the first relief to reach people inside the city, who had either chosen to stay in their homes while the battle went on around them, or were unable to make the difficult journey to the safety of relief camps behind government lines.

It is estimated that some one million people still remain in Mosul, where families go hungry and are forced to drink untreated water. Basic infrastructure such as power and health services is unavailable.

Iraqi Red Crescent Society President, Dr Yaseen Al-Mamoori, said local Red Crescent volunteers are doing everything possible to support affected communities in and around in Mosul. “With the support of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and coordinating with other actors on the ground, we are providing emergency relief, food, health and psychosocial support,” he said.

Over the past month, the IRCS relief efforts have been focused on the camps around Mosul. More than 42,000 hot meals have been distributed from IRCS field kitchens, along with more than 8,000 food parcels. Blankets, kitchen sets, jerry cans and clothes are distributed daily in the camps to people arriving from Mosul and surrounding towns.

IRCS health teams are providing first aid and basic health services in the camps; trained psychosocial volunteers are providing much needed emotional support.

Over 40,000 displaced people have found shelter in the camps prepared and run by the Government, Red Cross Red Crescent, the United Nations and other partner organizations. Over 13,000 displaced people have been taken in by generous host communities or live in public facilities.

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Media contacts

Mohammed Al-Khuzai
Undersecretary general, Iraqi Red Crescent Society
M: +964 790 111 1167

Joe Cropp
Communications delegate, IFRC
M: +964 750 392 6137

In Beirut:

Stephen Ryan
Communications coordinator – MENA, IFRC
E: stephen.ryan@ifrc.org
T: @stiofanoriain
M: +961 71 802779

In Geneva:

Benoit Carpentier
Team leader – public communications, IFRC
E: benoit.carpentier@ifrc.org
M: +41 79 213 2413