The Associated Press reports: More than 140,000 Iraqis have fled parts of Anbar province over clashes between security forces and al-Qaida militants, the worst displacement of civilians in years, a United Nations official said Friday.
The spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, Peter Kessler, described it as “the largest” displacement witnessed in the country since the sectarian violence of 2006-2008. He added that more than 65,000 people fled the conflict just in the past week alone.
Since late December, members of Iraq’s al-Qaida branch — known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant — have taken over parts of Ramadi, the capital of the largely Sunni province of Anbar. They also control the center of the nearby city of Fallujah.
Kessler said that many civilians are trapped and suffer from a lack of supplies. [Continue reading…]