“Many challenges remain in east Mosul, services need to be fully restored, and jobs need to be created, but the collective determination of the people to rebuild their lives is truly humbling,” he said.
Ambassador Simmonet was accompanied on the visit by Peter Hawkins, UNICEF Representative to Iraq and Javier Rio Navarro, Head of the Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) in Iraq, to assess the long term needs of the population in east Mosul.
The EU delegation visited a water treatment plant, a health center and a recently re-opened school: activities that are supported by UNICEF, in part, through contributions from ECHO.
“People in east Mosul, especially children who are back in the classrooms, and those receiving immunization in the health centers, feel that their lives are improving. However, the humanitarian situation in west Mosul remains acute and the improvement of services in the east needs to be sustained,” said Peter Hawkins.
“UNICEF is grateful to donors like the EU and ECHO, whose strong and consistent support has enabled us to respond to the needs of children and their families in the short term as well as the long term,” he added.
ECHO contributions to UNICEF in Iraq totaled 20 million Euros in 2016. The funds have supported lifesaving activities such as nutrition, water and sanitation as well as improving access to education for children displaced by conflict.
The EU Ambassador to Iraq and the UNICEF Representative reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen the EU-UNICEF partnership and to support the work of the Iraqi government to protect the rights of children and ensure that the most vulnerable children in Iraq have access to education, health and other services.
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