At its annual New Year’s Reception in The Hague IOM informed guests about its work and established or renewed relations. The reception was well-attended by representatives from Embassies, Consulates and the Dutch government.
IOM highlighted its role in global emergency crises, focusing on vulnerable mobile populations or communities requiring assistance. Zhian Sarraj, medical doctor and Nesar Ahmad Seddiqi, Orthopedic Traumatologist, briefed the audience about their work in emergency situations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Both doctors participate in IOM’s Temporary Return of Qualified Nationals Project. They work and live in the Netherlands but return temporarily to their countries of origin to transfer their knowledge and offer practical training on the spot. In some countries their assignment can lead to their involvement in emergency situations.
Northern Iraq, overwhelmed by internally displaced people and Afghanistan, still facing instability and security incidents, are in need of acute medical assistance. Both doctors offered their help. Dr. Sarraj worked with a team of the Kurdistan Medical Charity Foundation (KMCF) to provide medical assistance in refugee camps. Her work in northern Iraq was shown in a clip of the documentary Surprising Europe, to be shown of Dutch national tv.
Professor Seddiqi trained orthopedic surgeons of the Sardar Daud Khan and Shah Ghazi Amanullah Khan Hospitals in Kabul. Prof. Seddiqi showed the audience how he introduced new techniques to treat limb injuries as a consequence of landmines and bomb attacks, aimed at a complete reintegration in society.
Both doctors stressed the importance of their specific skills in combination with their cultural background.
With projects such as TRQN, IOM develops the potential of the diaspora for the benefit of their native country. The project aims to contribute to sustainable development and reconstruction of nine target countries.