New agreement promotes conflict sensitive programming in Iraq’s disputed internal boundaries areas
UNDP and IOM signed on 23 November a Letter of Agreement to undertake work in support of a Peace and Development Analysis, a joint project between UNDP and the Inter-Agency Information and Analysis Unit. The project seeks to understand the context-specific drivers of conflict and relevant development priorities in the Disputed Internal Boundaries (DIBs) areas in northern Iraq. It will provide first-hand information and analysis to ensure that development programming conducted in these areas by UN agencies is sensitive to local needs and priorities. As part of this project IOM has conducted interviews and led focus groups in Ninewa and Kirkuk Governorates which will contribute to the final report of the Peace and Development Analysis.
"I am delighted to sign this agreement with IOM which will enhance our ability to design and implement programmes in the DIBs areas that are sensitive to local needs and address the communities’ development priorities particularly since levels of deprivation in these areas are higher than in the rest of Iraq" said Peter Batchelor, UNDP Country Director for Iraq. “The project we are implementing in Ninewa will hopefully strengthen dialogue and coexistence between different ethnic groups and minorities” he added.
Under this agreement IOM will also provide UNDP with support for its Ninewa Minorities Dialogue project that aims to build local capacity to enhance inter-communal dialogue and understanding in the governorate of Ninewa. "Today's agreement is critical for the design of future projects in the northern areas of Iraq and should prove to be another successful cooperation between UN country team members" said Michael Pillinger, Head of IOM in Iraq.