Sweden reaffirms partnership with UNDP to support vulnerable Iraqis

Photo: United Nations Iraq

The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have signed a three-year $ 16.4 million agreement to further support vulnerable communities in Iraq.

Sweden’s contribution will be channelled through UNDP’s Funding Facility for Stabilization (FFS). The Facility implements fast-track initiatives in areas liberated from ISIL. This is Sweden’s sixth contribution to UNDP’s FFS. It brings its total support to $60.5 million, since the Facility was founded in 2015.

The projects are based on stabilization priorities identified by national counterparts.  FFS works to quickly restore essential public infrastructure. It provides short-term employment opportunities, boosts local livelihoods and economies. Furthermore, it strengthens capacity support, and facilitates peaceful reconciliation in communities liberated from ISIL.

Third anniversary

“This month marks three years since Iraq was officially liberated from ISIL. Yet 1.28 million Iraqis remain displaced. Our support to Iraqi authorities and citizens is critical to meet the needs of internally displaced persons returning to their areas of origin. Especially considering the disproportionately negative impact of COVID-19 on these vulnerable groups,” says the UNDP Resident Representative for Iraq, Zena Ali Ahmad.

“We are extremely grateful to Sweden for this critical additional contribution, and its unwavering support to stability in Iraq,” adds Ms. Ali-Ahmad.

Stabilization in Iraq

“Sweden remains committed to support the stabilization efforts in Iraq. Especially in order to facilitate the return of remaining internally displaced persons. We emphasize the importance of gender equality, human rights and sustainable development in all of these programmes. This includes a conflict perspective promoting social cohesion in the communities,” says the Head of the MENA Division at Sida, Eva Gibson Smedberg.

With the support of 28 partners, including Sweden, FFS has completed over 2,650 stabilization projects. They are located in Anbar, Diyala, Kirkuk, Ninewa and Salah al-Din, benefitting nearly 11 million people.