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Office of Refugee & IDP Affairs


 Population, Refugees and Migration – Internally Displaced Persons


The Office of Refugees & Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad coordinates the U.S. Government's policy, assistance, and resettlement programs for Iraqi displaced persons, conflict victims, and third country refugees within Iraq. 


The Embassy works directly with the Government of Iraq and international organizations such as UNHCR to address humanitarian needs of refugees, Iraqi refugees returning home, and internally displaced persons (IDPs).  U.S. Government-funded programs support several hundred thousand displaced persons in Iraq through activities such as provision of emergency relief supplies, shelter construction, legal protection, water systems, emergency health, and infrastructure rehabilitation for host communities.  The U.S. Government has provided over $1 billion in humanitarian assistance for displaced Iraqis in Iraq and neighboring states since 2003.


The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) is a humanitarian effort that reflects America’s compassion for some of the world’s most vulnerable persons.  A new path for accessing USRAP was established on January 28, 2008, allowing certain Iraqis with ties to the U.S. to qualify as refugees while still living in Iraq.  Processing of such cases is currently underway in Baghdad, but is subject to security and logistical constraints.  We encourage those who feel they are particularly vulnerable to process their cases outside of Iraq.  Please  contact IOM for information about this program or follow these links:

If it does not appear based on the information contained in the above links that the Iraqis in question qualify for access to the USRAP in Iraq, they may contact the UNHCR in a neighboring country to apply for refugee status.     

Information Library:  Resources


The FY 2008 Defense Authorization Act created 5,000 Special Immigrant Visas each year for the next five years for Iraqis who have been U.S. government employees or contractors (not those, however, who are/were employed through a grant or cooperative agreement) for at least one year, provided faithful and valuable service to the U.S. government, and who experienced or are experiencing an ongoing serious threat as a result of their employment by the U.S. government.  Iraqis who pursue this program are admitted to the United States through the issuance of an immigrant visa and are considered Legal Permanent Residents upon admittance.  The SIV program is administered by the Bureau of Consular Affairs and individuals interested in this program should consult the Consular Affairs website and application guidelines before making an application:

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