Since 2016 Belgium has been supporting the stabilization and reconstruction effort in Iraq, as part of our country’s holistic approach to the fight against terrorism.
This year again, Belgium will contribute 2 million euros to the “Funding Facility for Stabilization” (FFS) of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). This contribution will support the stabilization and the reconstruction of territories previously in the hands of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) and since then recovered by the International Coalition to Defeat Daesh, of which Belgium is a committed member. Development is indeed necessary to prevent the return of Daesh.
To enable the return of populations in decent living conditions, the FFS supports the rebuilding of basic infrastructure (water, electricity, …) and the rehabilitation of essential services such as education and health, also to increase livelihoods through job creation. Strengthening the resilience of communities and taking into account the gender dimension by supporting the integration of women into society are dimensions of the FFS that are particularly important for our country.
This contribution is part of Belgium’s holistic approach to the fight against terrorism, which aims to balance the preventive and repressive dimensions of counter-terrorism policies in order to increase their effectiveness. In the case of Iraq, the aim is to optimize the continuity and coherence of Belgian action by balancing the military dimension of our commitment in the fight against Daesh with the humanitarian and stabilization dimension for the benefit of the security and well-being of the Iraqi people.