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Iraq: Children of Mosul's Old City selling scrap metal to survive

By Rudaw 11/2/2019

By Ruptly


Iraqi children are forced to sell pieces of scrap metal scavenged from the ruins of Mosul's Old City, in order to provide for their families and themselves.


Video footage from Mosul on Saturday, shows how young merchants dressed in plastic raincoats collect different kinds of scrap metal - railings, crumpled corrugated iron and empty oil barrels.


According to one of the locals, Abu Ahmed: "we can’t make sure of how to support our families. We thought it would be easier after the liberation of the city. Now, nobody shows up to ask about our needs."


Ahmed stated that the Iraqi government is failing to adequately support the rebuilding of the city.


"You see potholes everywhere, the dead corpses are still under rubble. The aid is stolen by the local government officials. They are corrupt people," he added.


The merchants reportedly receive around 5,000 Iraqi dinars ($4) per 100kg of scrap metal they collect.


Mosul, one of Iraq's largest cities, was badly destroyed by the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL), after they took control in June 2014. The city was recaptured by Iraqi government forces in July 2017 after a nine-month long final battle.


The heaviest fighting took place in the Old City, leaving thousands of buildings, including its old churches and monasteries, in ruins.


thurgood bardico | 11/2/2019
I suspect that most of the destruction is from aerial bombardment
Jagerxin derashy | 12/2/2019
Since I can remember its been like that if not worse! When I was 7 years Old I worked as shoes polisher boy, when I turned 10 years old I was walking round the street buying scrap metals and plastics, at the summer months I was selling the ice or travel to Mosul to buy ice creams and ice pops bring them back to duhok and sale them for profit! But most of the times the ice creams and ice pops are melting down because of hot summer days or Got confiscated my Iraqi police at check points, I can remember one time my mother asked me to bring back some debes and tahini, grapes jelly and tahini hummus which I did, when we got to check points I was told by the police to get out of the the buss and told bus driver to go and they opened my bags, pored grapes jelly and tahini over my head drove about five miles away from nearest road and left me to walk home without any water at the hot summer day of Iraq! Now tell me what’s changed?
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