Daesh (ISIS) and Iraq

**Published in the Shrewsbury Chronicle on 19/10/2016**

It doesn’t seem that long ago that we were forced to lay witness to those terrible terrorist attacks in France. Through hard work and difficult decisions Britain and its international allies have steadily managed to curtail the strength of Daesh. We are now in a position where the Iraqi armed forces are able to lead the way in liberating the city of Mosul. Britain should and will encourage this to happen in a way that minimises the humanitarian impact. I know the UK Government is engaging with the Government of Iraq, the Kurdistan Regional Government, our coalition partners, the UN and other international organisations to ensure comprehensive plans are in place to achieve this.

The International Development Secretary has urged all parties in the conflict to ensure aid agencies get the access and support they need and that international humanitarian law is upheld. The Iraqi Government has committed to protecting civilians during the conflict, which I welcome.  

The UK has committed £169.5 million since summer 2014 to help those affected by Daesh in Iraq, and this includes £40 million in new funding announced last month to help put in place essential humanitarian support ahead of the military operation. The UK is also the largest contributor to the Iraq Humanitarian Pooled Fund.

It’s also right that we do all we can in regards to people who choose to leave Mosul, that’s why the UK is working with partners to ensure stabilisation efforts allow internally displaced persons to return to their homes safely.

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