More than 65,000 people have been displaced over the past week in central Iraq due to violent clashes, the U.N. refugee agency said Friday.
Most of the refugees fled from sectarian conflict in the cities of Fallujah and Ramadi in Iraq's Anbar province, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said in a release.
"Most of the recently displaced remain outside Fallujah city, accommodated by relatives or staying in schools, mosques and hospitals where resources are running low. Host families are having difficulties sustaining the burden of caring for the displaced," said UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards.
Since violence started in the region at the end of last year, more than 140,000 people have been made homeless, Iraq's Ministry of Displacement and Migration has said.
"Many of the displaced, nonetheless, are still in desperate need of food, medical care, and other aid. As the insecurity has spread, many families who fled several weeks ago have been displaced again," Edwards said.
"Establishing camps for the newly displaced is not our preferred option and may prolong displacement. But, if the government of Iraq opts to establish sites, UNHCR is ready to provide tents and core relief items as well as provide support to camp management," Edwards said.
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Original headline: Sectarian violence leaves 65,000 displaced in central Iraq
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