Millions of Iraqis are trapped
The national media is reporting that violence is down in Iraq, yet they're failing to mention the increasing number of U.S. airstrikes and the five million Iraqis who've left their homes; half of them have relocated within the country and the other half have left the country.
This is by Inter Press Service's Ahmed Ali, a correspondent who works closely with independent journalist Dahr Jamail:
At least five million Iraqis have fled their homes due to the violence under the U.S.-led occupation, but half of them are unable to leave the country, according to well-informed estimates.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), there are more than 4.4 million displaced Iraqis, an estimate that many workers among refugees find conservative.
The UNHCR announced last week that at present 2,000 Iraqis are fleeing their homes every day. Most of them have received direct threats from death squads or militias.
The provinces that have suffered the greatest displacement are the largely Sunni Baghdad, Diyala, al-Anbar and Salahadeen in central Iraq.
Members of many families who have not fled told IPS they have stayed on because they had no choice.
"We could not leave our city despite the security situation because we don't have the money to travel and live outside Iraq," Ali Muhsin, an official with the directorate general of education and a father of five told IPS in Baquba, 40 km northeast of Baghdad.