Joint Crisis Coordination Centre launched in Kurdistan

Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Ministry of Interior inaugurated its Joint Crisis Coordination Centre (JCC), mandated by the Council of Ministers in January 2015. Several international donor partners and the United Nations extended support to the KRG to build an institutional response and coordination capacity not only to the on going humanitarian and development crisis in Iraq, but also to future manmade and natural disasters in an “all hazards” approach. Karim Sinjari, Minister of Interior of the KRG welcomed the guests by saying: “Today I am very pleased to finally welcome our key international partners and jointly inaugurate the Joint Crisis Coordination Centre.”

The Minister continued by emphasizing that every minute counts when a crisis strikes, and that therefore an immediate, coordinated and pre-planned response saves lives. “The centre has been exactly established for this purpose, to enable the KRG and its Ministries, Governorates as well as international partners to respond to the current overwhelming humanitarian emergency and future natural and manmade crises in a timely and efficient manner,” he said. Minister Sinjari also thanked the UN agencies and other key partners, including the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), Government of Japan, UN Development Programme (UNDP), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA), UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) and Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB), for technical and financial assistance that has been provided to the establishment of the Centre.

“The United Nations stands by the government to respond to emergencies and strengthen its coordination and preparedness to crises, as government’s oversight is critical to ensure long term equitable services and resilience of all affected people,” the UN Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General, Humanitarian Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative Lise Grande said. “Emergencies can happen at any time or place, preparedness means taking steps to strengthen the institutions, people and business resilience to humanitarian emergencies and any future manmade or natural hazards,” she added.

The centre’s main functions include the collection and analysis of information through continuous 24/7 monitoring, research and follow up about all crises and humanitarian developments; policy advice to enable the government to take strategic decisions, manage and mobilize resources; and, the coordination of the crisis response among relevant ministries, departments, the international community and non-governmental organizations. The Kurdistan Ministry of Interior, which supervises its functions and duties, has formed a collaboration network with several international agencies to further develop and strengthen the operational capacity of the centre. Development partners such as the United Kingdom and Japan have supported the establishment of the crisis coordination centre from its early stages. With UNDP leading the effort, the United Nations provides continuous technical assistance, while the MSB has seconded its technical expertise in civil protection and preparedness from day one through the facilitation and funding from UNDP.