Press Release

First Women's Protection Centre in Mosul offers enhanced safety and living conditions for girls and women survivors of violence

28 February 2024

Ninewa, 27 February 2024 – Today, UNFPA, in cooperation with the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and Ninewa Governorate, proudly announces the inauguration of the Women Protection Centre in Mosul, located in the Al-Akhaa area. The opening of the Centre, constructed with support from UN-Habitat and funding from the French Government, signifies a crucial step in addressing the urgent need to enhance access to protective services for girls and women survivors of violence.

UNFPA ensures that all women and girls served in the centres will receive comprehensive support, including medical, psychosocial, and legal aid, employment opportunities, and assistance in reintegrating into society.  After completion, the facility was handed over to the local authorities, who are now responsible for its operation and for meeting the community's needs. From the project's inception, collaboration with the Ninewa Governorate Office, the Women’s Empowerment Department in the governorate, the Municipality of Mosul, and the Electricity and Water Directorates has been crucial to the successful completion of the construction.

The Centre, covering 520 square meters across two floors, includes vital facilities such as a lobby, security room, clinic, restrooms, kitchen, dining room, management room, workstations, and accommodation rooms. Led by UN-Habitat, the construction phase generated 1,994 daily job opportunities for around 84 skilled and unskilled local workers from Mosul, highlighting the project's substantial economic impact on the community since its inception.

Attending the ceremony, Mr Patrick Durel, France’s Ambassador to Iraq, stated that: “France commends the establishment of a protection centre to host women survivors of violence. As the Ambassador of France in Iraq, I am very proud to take part to its inauguration. France is honoured to have funded this project, which also includes the establishment or renovation of facilities in Baghdad, Ramadi and Diwaniyah.”  “I praise UNFPA's efforts to make this centre possible in cooperation with Un-Habitat. I also commend the commitment of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs to set women's protection as a priority. We must all provide girls and women with protection, in France or in Iraq, now or tomorrow. Iraq can rely on the French government to carry on with its cooperation in this regard,” he added.

Speaking at the ceremony, Mrs Rafi’a Mohammed Saeed, the Director of the Department of Women, Family and Children in Ninewa Governorate, said that "the Women's Protection Centre holds great significance within Ninewa Governorate, as it addresses the crucial need for a safe haven for women facing violence. Prior to its establishment, our community lacked essential support systems for these vulnerable individuals. With the centre now open, women in need can access protection, psychological support, and additional essential services. We express our gratitude to UNFPA, the French government, and UN Habitat for their invaluable contributions in making this vital achievement a reality."

"The Women Protection Center in Ninawa is a crucial initiative providing a safe and supportive haven for survivors of violence, offering critical services and care essential for their healing journey," stated Mr. Nestor Owomuhangi, UNFPA’s Representative to Iraq. He emphasised that UNFPA's dedication goes beyond inaugurating the centre, aiming for lasting and impactful change. "In addition to establishing survivor services, UNFPA is actively collaborating with the government to enhance policy frameworks preventing all forms of violence against women and girls. The centre stands as a beacon of hope and resilience, symbolising our commitment to comprehensive support and enduring positive transformation in the lives of those we serve."

“UN-Habitat is honoured with the completion and handover of the first Women Protection Centre in Mosul. Every aspect of the facility, from the accommodation rooms to the access points, has been meticulously designed to enhance the protection and living conditions of women and girls who are survivors of violence. Our commitment to fostering a better urban future includes making cities safer for all individuals, ensuring that no one and no place is left behind” said Mr. Muslim Qazimi, Head of UN-Habitat's Country Programme in Iraq.

The building of the Women Protection Centre in Mosul was part of a comprehensive project, “Restoring Women, Youth, and Health Services in Iraq,” that includes the establishment of new facilities in Diwaniyah and Anbar, as well as the improvement of conditions in the operating Centre in Baghdad, renovated in 2023. This encompasses not only the physical infrastructure but also the provision of necessary equipment and supplies. The Women Protection Center in Baghdad, already renovated and operational, exemplifies the project's commitment to creating secure spaces for survivors of violence.

As we inaugurate the Women Protection Center in Ninewa, Mosul, we look towards a future where survivors of violence find solace, support, and a path to rebuilding their lives. This initiative underscores the importance of creating safe spaces that not only protect but empower.

For more information, please contact:
Ms Sana Jalal, Communications and Partnerships Officer – UNFPA @
Mr Maan Sami, Programme Officer – UN-Habitat @ 

Sana Jalal


UN entities involved in this initiative

United Nations Human Settlements Programme
United Nations Population Fund

Goals we are supporting through this initiative