The battle for Mosul: Première Urgence Internationale prepares to help people fleeing the city

Press release

The battle for Mosul: Première Urgence Internationale prepares to help people fleeing the city

Paris, 20 October 2016 – With the assault on Mosul launched on Monday 17 October, Première Urgence Internationale fears a humanitarian crisis on a huge scale. The Iraqi city has almost 1.5 million inhabitants, who may flee the conflict en masse. To help them, the NGO is deploying mobile clinics near to Mosul, ready to help treat the refugees.

On Monday 17 October, a military offensive began near Mosul in northern Iraq. Première Urgence Internationale is concerned about the mass population displacement that could be caused by this battle. “Even though this event was expected, the current infrastructure is insufficient to cope with a population influx on this scale. We’re preparing to respond to a major humanitarian crisis that could last for months,” explains Pierre-Manuel Mendez, the NGO’s Iraq programme leader.

Première Urgence Internationale has been present in Iraq since 1997, and currently operates in two displaced persons’ camps and a refugee camp in Iraqi Kurdistan. To address the situation, the NGO is also deploying a number of mobile clinics, formed of teams of doctors, nurses and pharmacists, located less than 50 km to the north-east of Mosul. These clinics are ready to help the people fleeing Mosul who require immediate primary medical care. Two other mobile clinics are also in place to provide mental health care. These clinics are currently travelling along the front line.

Première Urgence Internationale’s aim is to provide a comprehensive response to this humanitarian crisis by carrying out water-, hygiene- and sanitation-related activities. Pierre-Manuel Mendez says: “We will do everything we can, but it will probably not be enough given the extent of the humanitarian disaster that lies ahead.”

About Première Urgence Internationale

Première Urgence Internationale is non-profit, non-political, secular non-governmental organisation of international solidarity whose vocation is to defend the fundamental rights of people, as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948. Our objective: to enable communities to sustainably recover their independence and dignity.

Our teams take action each day in order to cover the basic needs of civil victims in danger, marginalised and excluded by the effects of natural disasters, wars and situations of economic breakdown. In this way, we take action in related areas such as healthcare, food safety, nutrition, rehabilitation, construction of infrastructure, access to water, hygiene and sanitisation, economic boosts, education and protection. Première Urgence Internationale provides aid to more than six million people across 21 countries in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Europe.

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