Casualties in Iraq, 2012-2016. Data from Graphic: James P. Galasyn

By Zena Tahhan
13 May 2016

(Al Jazeera) – Iraqi civilians and officials have voiced concern over the humanitarian situation in the country's western cities of Fallujah and Ramadi.

"The situation is deteriorating every day - the shortage of food is becoming worse," a member of the Anbar Province's security committee, Rajeh Barakat al-Issawi, told Al Jazeera. "ISIL fighters are banning all and any aid from entering the city [Fallujah]," he added.

For almost two years now, Fallujah has endured a siege imposed on the city after it became the first to fall to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) in January 2014.

Since then, the Iraqi army has placed a near-total blockade, and ISIL has barred any civilians from leaving the city. With only a few routes remaining open, there is a serious shortage of food, medicine and fuel.

Approximately 50,000 of the residents in Fallujah are at risk of starvation.

Recently, the United Nations described Iraq's humanitarian crisis as "one of the world's worst", saying that more than 10 million Iraqis, making up almost a third of the population, are in need of immediate humanitarian aid. This number has doubled from last year. [more]

Iraq humanitarian crisis 'one of the world's worst'



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