Photo: An Iraqi Christian refugee holds a 12-day-old baby in Ankawa, Iraq, Aug. 7.  (CNS photo/Sahar Mansour)

“Thousands of displaced people are still residing in parks, churches and empty buildings suffering from a stifling heat, lacking basic services, completely having no idea whether they will be back to their original places or not,” reports Nabil A. Nissan, the executive director of Caritas Iraq, in an e-mail to Bishop Murphy and others who have sent assistance to the area.  “(They are) depending mainly on the aid given to them and full of anxiety of the obscure future.”

Nissan sent the following update:

1. The Political Situation:  After the military support received by the Peshmerga (Kurdish forces) from the US and other countries, things are going in favour of the Peshmerga at the expense of ISIS and the armed groups.  Some areas were freed from the control of the ISIS, but the return of the displaced to these areas seems to be difficult at the right moment.

2. The choosing of a new Prime Minister and the formation of a new government which might help in stabilizing the situation and keeping a way from sectarianism is positive progress

3. Caritas Iraq continues providing aid to the displaced in areas not reached by any other organization or institution because of the experience that Caritas Iraq has in working in the region.  Caritas Iraq was able to reach Duhok (Sarsank, Ineshky, Amadiya…), Zakho (Fishkhabour, Persephy, Derabon…) targeting 5000 families. The continuous support received from our partners and church helped a great deal.

Currently Caritas Iraq is in the process of: Evaluating the process of implementing the current project;  Studying the updates in the area and preparing the strategic plan for the upcoming period.