Third of Iraqis Need Critical Aid

Government of violence-riddled nation can't provide basics
Iraqi children play at a registering center for Iraqi refugees in Doma, a suburb of Damascus, Syria Thursday July 19, 2007. According to official statistics there are more than 1.5 million Iraqis in...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A third of Iraq's population—some 8 million people—are in critical need of emergency aid because they have no food, water or shelter, according to an OXFAM report detailed in the BBC. Trapped in a maelstrom of sectarian violence, the Iraqi government is unable to provide basic needs. Some 4 million Iraqis have either been displaced from their homes or have fled the country.

Some 15% of the population can't regularly afford to eat. Nearly 30% of Iraqi children are malnourished. "Basic services, ruined by years of war and sanctions, cannot meet the needs of the Iraqi people," said the director of Oxfam. Meanwhile a special congressional investigator told the BBC that corruption is Iraq so widespread it is equivalent to "a second insurgency."