US releases $18 million for infrastructure development in Iraq
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has awarded a total of $18 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nation’s Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to strengthen the health and sanitation systems in Iraq.
WHO received a $10 million, one-year grant to identify and address the most immediate and short-term health needs of the Iraqi population while also strengthening health sector policy and systems such as health information.
Specific activities supported under the grant include monitoring diseases and health status, responding to outbreaks of communicable diseases, rehabilitating health facilities and laboratories, training health staff, and assisting in the management and coordination of donor support and health partners working in Iraq.
USAID allocated an initial eight million dollar, one-year grant to UNICEF to provide basic health, water supply and sanitation services in Iraq. Immediate attention will be given to repairing key infrastructures and meeting basic household needs for water and sanitation. The grant also makes available UNICEF assistance in management and technical assistance to facility-based medical staff, the publication and distribution of relevant health education materials, nutritional assessments.
The US relief and reconstruction effort for Iraq will be the largest American aid project since the nation's Marshall Plan for Western Europe after World War II. The estimated US reconstruction package for Iraq is $1.9 billion.
According to USAID, most of the reconstruction money is not for war damages, but for rebuilding Iraq’s infrastructure, including schools, health, sanitation and water-treatment facilities that have been neglected by a regime which has spend its money on rearming. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)