Freeland announces $12 million for reconstruction efforts in Iraq

Feb 15, 2018, 02:10
Freeland announces $12 million for reconstruction efforts in Iraq

Iraq needs US$88.2 billion to rebuild after years of war against the Islamic State group, Planning Minister Salman al-Jumaili said Monday, as an global conference on the country's reconstruction opened in Kuwait.

Referring to the more than $88 billion in reconstruction expenses, Reuters reported Monday, "About $23 billion will be needed in the short term and more than $65 billion in the medium term, the director-general of Iraq's planning ministry, Qusay Adulfattah, told the conference".

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will attend the conference, and he has said that there are "Arab donors willing to help and support".

The U.S. alone spent $60 billion over nine years — some $15 million a day — to rebuild Iraq.

Large parts of Iraq's second-largest city, Mosul, are still in ruins, more than six months after it was retaken by the government.

Iraq declared victory over ISIL in December, having taken back all the territory captured by the militants in 2014 and 2015.

The speakers said the size of the damage and the lack of basic services has made living in those areas nearly impossible, confirming the need to help the displaced and to facilitate their lives and work to return them to their areas after rehabilitating them.

Kuwait has opened a week of conferences seeking aid for rebuilding Iraq after the onslaught of the Islamic State group.

About 2.5 million Iraqis remain displaced by the fighting, he added.

The officials made their declaration at an worldwide donors' conference hosted by Kuwait.

"I have come to tell you of France's support to accompany you".

"Today's announcement will contribute to the reconstruction of critical services in areas that have been liberated from Daesh and will concretely encourage women's empowerment in Iraq by promoting their participation in reconciliation efforts and advancing the economic involvement of women in their communities", Freeland said. We will always be there.

The US also occupied Iraq for eight years after its invasion of the country in 2003, which led to the fall of former strongman Saddam Hussein. "We will also be there in the reconstruction phase", he said.

Iraq has suffered from decades of war and it is striking that it is holding its reconstruction conference in Kuwait, which it invaded in 1990, leading to defeat by a US -led coalition and more than a decade of sanctions. Iraqi forces, aided by Iranian-backed Shiite militias and a USA -led coalition, recaptured the city in July 2017.

The government in Baghdad says it needs almost US$90 billion (RM354.96 billion) to rebuild devastated homes, schools, hospitals and economic infrastructure after three years of war against IS.

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