A selection of photographs, produced on assignment for L’Espresso magazine, about the reconstruction and agricultural revitalization of Qaraqosh, an ancient Christian city in northern Iraq, after its liberation from ISIS occupation.
Salam Yaqoob Yousif in his small farm. The farm, abandoned with the arrival of Daesh, was reactivated (with the support of AVSI NGO) after the liberation of Qaraqosh.
Calves (provided by AVSI NGO within an agricultural revitalization project) at the farm of Salam Yaqoob Yousif. The farm, abandoned with the arrival of Daesh, was reactivated (with the support of AVSI) after the liberation of Qaraqosh.
Najib, former teacher, fought from 1980 to 1983 and lost his right arm in the war between Iran and Iraq. He is one of the recipients of a contribution of 25 sheep, 25 calves, 12.5 tons of feed and veterinary services for one year, in the framework of an agricultural revitalization project from AVSI NGO.
Veterinarian Jolar Kaka from AVSI NGO performs a medical examination on calves at a farm re-started after the lineratiojn of Qaraqosh, along with Khaer Hays Kathm, a Muslim of the Kaka’i minority, who lives and works at the farm, which is owned by a local Christian entrepreneur.
Noora with her little sister Domoa (their names can be translated respectively into Light and Tear), in one of the farms reactivated (with the support of AVSI NGO) after the liberation of Qaraqosh. Their family is from the Kaka’i Muslim minority and lives and works in the farm. Several Muslim families from the regions surrounding Qaraqosh are employed in local farms owned by Christian local entrepreneurs.
Sister Fabromia Kaas Butris in the teachrs room at the kindergarten “Infante Jesus” which she directs and which was restored between April and October 2017 (with the support of AVSI NGO) after being burned by Daesh. Today it houses 500 children under the direction of the Dominican nuns. AVSI continues to support the kindergarten with logistics, psychological assistance for children and training courses for teachers.
Students at the Sport College in Qaraqosh. It was built by the Iraqi government in April 2007, destroyed by Daesh during the occupation of Qaraqosh and it is now partially renewed thanks to international aid.
Athraa Dhia, a student from Qaraqosh, in the cafeteria of the St. Paul Center for Church Services, a social center run by the local Catholic church that provides recreational spaces and free classes for the city’s kids. The center, heavily damaged by Daesh militias, was rebuilt and reopened thanks to international donations.
Father Georges Johola, among the first to return to Qaraqosh after liberation from Daesh, runs the Supreme Church Board for Reconstruction Baghdeda, an organization collecting donations from around the world to rebuild houses destroyed in the region. He is here portraied in his office at the headquarters of the organization. The organization has already completed repairs in over 3,000 homes.
Una giovane suora d’avanti alla canonica della chiesa Al-Tahira (Immacolata Concezione). La chiesa, teatro di una distruzione particolarmente violenta da parte di Daesh, è stata riaperta nel novembre 2016 ed è ancora in corso di restauro.
A local worker uses a pressure washer to remove the burn stains from the walls during reconstruction work at the Church of Saints Benham and Sarah, burnt by Daesh. The restoration began in April 2019.
Muslim kids walk in an agricultural area near Qaraqosh. Several Muslim families from the regions surrounding Qaraqosh are employed in local farms owned by Christian local entrepreneurs.