IOM Assists in Relocation of Vulnerable Women and Children from Iraq to Germany

Iraq - The International Organization for Migration (IOM) yesterday (21/09) facilitated the relocation of 65 women and children from Dohuk to Erbil to Baden-Württemberg, Germany. These beneficiaries are taking part in the German-funded Humanitarian Admissions Programme, which with support from IOM, seeks to facilitate the safe and orderly movement of vulnerable survivors of the Iraq conflict to Germany.

The Government of Baden-Württemberg identified these beneficiaries as vulnerable because of their experiences during the conflict that has so far displaced 3.2 million Iraqis since January 2014. They are mainly women and children who were under Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) control at some point during the conflict. All are survivors or witnesses of extreme violence, and the majority have been living in camps in the northern Iraqi governorate of Dohuk.

IOM staff spoke with one of the beneficiaries who has been living in Germany since June. “Except for those still in ISIL captivity, my entire family has been killed. After what I went through, I had difficulty believing I could ever feel safe again, but I felt safe as soon as I stepped off the plane in Germany. I am learning the German language and want to work to support myself.”

Since IOM movements began in March 2015, 329 vulnerable Iraqis have been resettled in Germany under the programme. IOM provides cultural orientation sessions, medical care and clothing vouchers, and then accompanies beneficiaries from Iraq to Germany.

In Germany, beneficiaries receive access to free psychosocial and health care, accommodation, language courses, cash assistance and education. They will receive German residency and the opportunity to bring close relatives to Germany later. In total, IOM plans to assist in the safe and orderly movement of up to 1,000 beneficiaries from Iraq to Germany by the end of the programme in December of this year.

IOM Iraq Chief of Mission Dr. Thomas Lothar Weiss said: “IOM’s mandate is dignified, safe and orderly migration for the benefit of all. By working with the government of Baden-Württemberg, we are able to ensure these beneficiaries receive cultural orientation, medical care, clothing vouchers, transportation and logistical support on their way to Germany.”

Project Leader for the State Ministry of Baden-Württemberg Dr. Michael Blume said: “These survivors have serious medical and psychosocial needs and are seeking refuge. As a wealthy and safe country, we are obligated to help. IOM is exceeding our expectations, as many staff are able to proactively be both empathetic and professional in their operations.”

For further information, please contact IOM Iraq: Sandra Black, Tel. +964 751 234 2550, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Renato Libanora, Tel. +964 750 021 1725, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Additional Info

  • Agency: IOM

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