Canada is dispatching $2.75 million in humanitarian aid to northern Iraq, International Development Minister Christian Paradis said today in Ottawa, as the government also confirmed the first Canadian delivery of arms and munitions to Iraqi and Kurdish forces battling Islamic militants.
The Prime Minister’s Office said in a release Friday that a CC-177 Globemaster III cargo plane delivered military supplies donated by the government of Albania to Iraqi and Kurdish forces battling fighters from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. The release did not state when the flight occurred.
Canada has two planes in the region, the Globemaster and a CC-130J Hercules, conducting missions out of Cyprus and Eastern Europe, as part of the Canadian Air Task Force Iraq with allies including the United States and the United Kingdom.
The funding announced by Paradis is part of a broader $5-million announcement made three weeks ago. An initial $2.25 million in funding was strictly a cash contribution distributed by relief groups on the ground.
The $2.75 million announced Friday is to be spent on humanitarian supplies heading to the region through a Canadian government-funded warehouse managed by the Red Cross in Dubai.
The supplies are destined for Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan region in northern Iraq that has seen savage attacks by ISIS over the past few months.
The new money is being split as follows:
The supplies include blankets, tents and mosquito nets, kitchen sets, and basic hygiene items like toothpaste, razors and feminine hygiene products.
Aid is badly needed in the area besieged by the incursion of ISIS militants. An estimated 1.3 million people are affected.
The first $2.25 million, announced Aug. 10, was split between the ICRC ($1 million), Mercy Corps ($750,000) and Save the Children Canada ($500,000).
By: CBC News