Located near Baghdad, most of the residents of the Bzebiz camp have returned to their homes. Only 200 families remain out of 17,000 that once resided there.
The Iraqi Ministry of Migration and Migration has announced that it will be closing the Bzebiz displacement camp located 50 kilometres from the city of Fallujah in Anbar Province. At its height, the camp housed over 17,000 displaced people from the different Iraqi Provinces. However, after the liberation of the country, many of the families began returning to their homes in Anbar Province.
“We officially declare the full closure of all the camps in Bzebiz. Everyone knows the suffering of the province and camps during the displacement,” said Mazen Khaled, the advisor to the Governor of Anbar on Refugee Affairs. “All the families have returned to their areas in the province after it was liberated by the security services and tribal forces.”
Currently, there are only 200 families that have not returned home and these families will be relocated and merged into the Amiriya Camp. According to Khaled, the Iraqi Council of Ministers is attempting to close many camps in the next period and merge others in order to concentrate aid delivered to the IDPs.
However, according to many reports, the remaining IDPs are very worried about the closure of the camp and the “forced” returns that some have faced. The IDPs claim that many returnees have received threats from local tribes due to accusations of collaborating with ISIS.
According to Mustafa Hamid, in an attempt to curb this issue, families wanting to return home are given security clearances by the intelligence officials and security measures are put in place to ease their return home.
Since the defeat of ISIS in the country in December 2017, thousands of Iraqi families have been returning to their homes despite the destruction and absence of infrastructure and services.
While they continue to demand that aid is delivered to ease the reconstruction process, many individuals have carried personal projects to reconstruct their homes in an attempt to return to normalcy.