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UN stepping up aid to one million uprooted by Iraq insurgents

Published on Jun 20, 2014 11:02 PM

GENEVA (REUTERS) - The United Nations said on Friday it was expanding aid operations in Iraq to help 1 million people driven from their homes by fighting as Islamist militant forces have seized wide tracts of the country's north and west this year.

Many families are living in the open, in urgent need of food, water, shelter and latrines, said Ms Jacqueline Badcock, the United Nations resident and humanitarian coordinator in Iraq.

"Humanitarian agencies are rapidly scaling up in the face of this unfortunate challenge," she said in a statement appealing for access to thousands of displaced in areas held by armed factions including the radical Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL).

Insecurity and depleted fuel stocks are hampering efforts to deliver supplies, amid fears of outbreaks of measles and diarrhoeal diseases, UN aid agencies said.

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