MESOP : Report on North Iraq — 5 Refugees Dying Per Day

Assyrian International News Agency – The Hammurabi Human Rights Organization* has issued its latest report, dated August 21, 2014, on the situation in North Iraq.

Status of Refugees – In Arbel there are now 5 refugee deaths per day, going back to August 7.

  • The number of refugees has overwhelmed the relief agencies. There is scarcity of food and shelter. Distribution channels are slow and ineffective.
  • Refugees are anxious about the military operations against ISIS in their towns and villages, and they fear for their property, especially in light of the fact that many of their former Muslim neighbors have participated in looting and plundering.
  • The number of Assyrian Christian families seeking asylum has risen as hundreds of families who are now in Turkey are waiting in front of United Nations offices in Ankara to register and apply for emigration.
  • The vast majority of the refugees are pressuring religious and political leaders to find a way for a rapid mass exodus out of Iraq, because of all the suffering, hardship and difficulty they are experiencing. Large numbers of families are still sleeping on sidewalks and parks and there is the fear this situation and their plight will extend into winter.
  • Their is anger, frustration and tension among the refugees as they are being moved from the halls and courtyards of churches into United Nations camps.
  • The Ministry of Displacement and Migration is extremely slow in giving grants to refugees. Thousands of families in Dohuk have yet to receive grants. In the words of one refugee, “they move on the back of a turtle.”
  • The condition of Yazidi refugees is becoming critical for lack of camps to house them, forcing hundreds of families to shelter in unfinished buildings in the city of Dohuk.


  • There is rising discontent with ISIS in Mosul.
  • Female doctors have gone on strike to protest ISIS interference in the treatment of patients, especially during childbirth or treatment of some gynecological illnesses.

* The Hammurabi Human Rights Organization (HHRO), an NGO based in Baghdad, Iraq, monitors the human rights situation in Iraq, particularly of minorities such as Assyrians, Turkmen, Yazidis and Shabak. Founded in 2005, HHRO works for human rights observation and documentation, in addition to implementation of humanitarian relief in Iraq.

HHRO works with various Iraqi and international institutions on variety of issues.

HHRO publishes annual reports on Human Rights situations focusing on Minorities. In 2013, HHRO was recognized and awarded as the best NGO by the United States State Department for its major achievements in the most difficult situations for the year 2012 in Baghdad.