Iraq

Iraq Map OTI

Promoting the early recovery and social cohesion of communities affected by violent extremism.


WHY USAID/OTI IS IN IRAQ

Sectarianism, weak governance, and corruption allowed ISIS to capture and hold large swaths of Iraq. The legacy of their violence—physical destruction, psychological scars, and mass displacement—is evident across a diverse array of Iraqi communities, including religious and ethnic minority populations. USAID/OTI is helping communities affected by ISIS recover from the conflict and work toward a more pluralistic and socially cohesive future in an effort to contribute to the larger U.S. foreign policy priority of stabilizing Iraq.

USAID/ OTI’S ROLE IN IRAQ

The goal of the USAID/OTI Iraq program is to increase stability through strategic interventions in the Ninewa Plain, Mosul, Sinjar, and western Anbar. USAID/OTI works closely with local civil society organizations, faith-based groups, and local government to implement quick-impact activities that address community recovery priorities and promote an inclusive Iraq. An inclusive and stable Iraq is necessary for long-term and durable solutions to extremism and the threat of terrorism that the United States faces.

To achieve this goal, USAID/OTI works toward two main objectives:

  • Accelerate recovery in ISIS-affected areas to allow for internally displaced persons (IDPs) to durably return; and
  • Repair and strengthen communities’ social fabric by promoting social cohesion and reinforcing community-level stabilization efforts.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

  • USAID/OTI works to rapidly restore essential public services in communities liberated from ISIS to create the conditions needed for the successful and durable return of IDPs. In Mosul, USAID/OTI works in some of the city’s most damaged neighborhoods to restore basic services. Local partners and USAID/OTI delivered more than 34 miles of electric cables and rehabilitated 25 electrical substations — expanding electricity to thousands of residents in Mosul’s Old City.
  • By installing more than 4,600 street lights in 12 towns in western Ninewa, central Sinjar, and western Anbar, USAID/OTI helped improve public safety. This assistance contributed to businesses staying open later and families, including women and children, feeling safe enough to leave their homes at night.
  • USAID/OTI provides heavy equipment and in-kind support to local branches of the Civil Defense Directorate (CDD), Iraq’s first responders. In Anbar and Ninewa provinces, this assistance has enabled the CDD to save lives and respond to emergencies like wildfires that destroyed agricultural fields in the summer of 2019. This support bolsters the legitimacy of a credible government institution and ensures that emergency needs are met. 
  • USAID/OTI is ensuring that students are able to return to school — a priority in conflict-affected areas. USAID/OTI has helped equip 149 schools procure more than 30,000 school kits, and provided backpacks and uniforms to approximately 20,000 primary school students in Mosul, Sinjar, and the Ninewa Plain.
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Last updated: January 16, 2020

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