03/18/2020 Iraq (International Christian Concern) – The Nineveh Plains Protection Unit (NPU), an Iraqi Christian militia, is implementing the decision to install a curfew and travel restrictions for people living in the al-Hamdaniya district. The lockdown is meant to address rising concern regarding the coronavirus. Mosul has conducted some tests for the virus but media indicates that the city lacks the capacity to do anything more than gather the required materials. The actual testing is occurring in Baghdad, according to the reports.
The Nineveh Plains still lacks a number of basic infrastructure resources following its occupation by ISIS. For Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), many of whom are Christian from the al-Hamdaniya area, the consequences of displacement are still heavily felt. Several IDPs are living in conditions which would make the spread of the virus easier. For those who have already returned home, they are living with access to the most basic of resources. Christians continue to express fears about traveling to Mosul, which was the capital of ISIS under their occupation.
As the Nineveh Plains limits movement in an attempt to quarantine, the impact on locals will be significant. It further increases the burden of living as a persecuted Christian in Iraq.
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