The head of Catholic Relief Services and the chairmen of two US bishops’ committees have urged congressional leaders to approve additional funding for humanitarian relief and recovery operations as part of a comprehensive budget measure for fiscal 2017.
The Catholic leaders wrote a letter in support of a request by the Obama administration for Overseas Contingency Operations funds to address the growing needs of those forced to flee their homes because of natural disasters around the world or as a result of the ongoing fight against Daesh militants.
They urged action before the 9th Decemebr deadline that Congress faces on the federal budget. The government is funded through that date because of a continuing resolution the House passed – and President Barack Obama signed – at the end of September to avoid a government shutdown.
‘More than 50,000 people have already fled Mosul, joining the approximately 3.3 million Iraqis who have been internally displaced since Daesh began occupying parts of Iraq in 2014,’ stated the letter, released by Baltimore-based CRS on 29th November. ‘(We) believe that as the world’s wealthiest nation, we have an obligation to help the innocent who fall victim to war, to protect the marginalised and to lift people out of poverty.’
Picture: A damaged statue of Mary is seen in a church in Qaraqosh, Iraq, on 25th November. (CNS photo/Goran Tomasevic, Reuters).