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 Home > News & Policies > April 2003

Operation Iraqi Freedom

For Immediate Release
April 14, 2003

Global Message

Military Update

The war is not over, and much work remains to be done.

Coalition forces have completely surrounded Baghdad, and are continuing to secure large sections of the city.

U.S. forces are in Kirkuk and securing northern oilfields.

Coalition forces continue to engage pockets of resistance, Baath Party irregulars, and regime death squads.

Humanitarian Update

The World Food Program has purchased 500,000 tons of food for delivery into Iraq. In addition to the estimated 675,000 tons of food identified by the UN under the Oil-for-Food program, these commodities can feed the entire population of Iraq for several months.

This week the first of two ships carrying 50,000 tons of Australian wheat will finish offloading in Kuwait. The food, which will be used as part of the OFF program, can feed 1.7 million Iraqis in need.

The World Health Organization is flying 50 surgical kits to Jordan. Each kit contains anesthetics, surgical equipment, and medical disposables, such as bandages and syringes, for 100 surgeries and several days of post-operative recovery.

On April 8, UNICEF sent 11 trucks with relief supplies - mostly water and supplies to transport water - to Um Qail, southern Basra, Safwan, and Az Zubayr. UNICEF has sent a total of 87 trucks into southern Iraq since the conflict began.

There are pockets of need, but no humanitarian crisis. Shortages of water and food are not new, and not a result of Coalition action, but of the deliberate policy of Saddam's regime to deny goods and services from the Iraqi people.