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Denmark aid will help displaced Iraqis return home: ministry

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Denmark aid will help displaced Iraqis return home: ministry
Iraq's federal police members wave Iraq's national flag as they celebrate in the Old City of Mosul on July 9, 2017. Photo: Fadel Senna/AFP/Scanpix
16:04 CEST+02:00
Denmark’s foreign ministry says it is increasing its humanitarian aid to Iraq after the country’s security forces regained the city of Mosul.

Danish aid will help displaced people to one day return to the area, the ministry said.

The victory over the Islamic State (Isis) terror group in the Iraqi city of Mosul proves that the coalition effort is working, and the much work must be done before refugees return home, the ministry said in a press statement.

“The liberation of Mosul shows that what the coalition is doing is working. Isis has lost its symbolic ‘capital’. The fight has been long and hard and has unfortunately brought with it great civilian losses and left ruins in Mosul as a result of Isis’ gruesome and barbaric actions,” Foreign Minister Anders Samuelsen said in the statement.

After a two-year siege to liberate the city, damage to infrastructure such as bridges, schools, waterworks and hospitals makes it difficult for many of the city’s displaced people to return home, the ministry wrote as it announced a pledge of 21 million kroner (2.8 million euros) in 2017 and a further 25 million kroner (3.4 million euros) in 2018 for mine clearing in the area.

READ ALSO: Anti-Isis coalition meets in Denmark to assess campaign

A further ten million kroner (1.3 million euros) has been made available to “promote initiatives that will contribute to more long-term peace and reconciliation in Iraq,” the ministry added.

Plans are also under way for a “nine-figure sum” (in kroner) to be announced later in the year as additional aid money for stabilisation in Syria and Iraq "so that displaced Iraqis can return to their homes,” Samuelsen said.

Foreign development minister Ulla Tørnæs said that the government had decided to prioritise Iraq in its allocation of foreign aid.

“We will… continue to prioritise the humanitarian situation in Iraq… We are following developments closely and including potential need for further aid. I would also like to highlight the importance of all parties ensuring the security of civil and human rights and that humanitarian needs are respected,” she said in the ministry press statement.

Iraqi security forces were widely reported on Monday to be clearing the final pockets of Isis resistance in the city Monday after a 9-month battle, although victory has not yet been formally announced.

READ ALSO: Denmark to send special troops into Syria

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