The first batch of the guards were sent to Iraq after the 1991 Gulf War to help protect Iraqi Kurds in the north of the country who had rebelled against President Saddam Hussein. The UN's Department of Humanitarian Affairs (DHA) appealed earlier this year for dollars 489m (pounds 320m) to cover its Iraq operations for a year from April, but an offical said less than dollars 2m had been pledged.
'It's not just the guards who are affected, it's our whole programme,' said the official. 'With the guards gone, however, there'll no longer be a visible UN presence in the country.'Reuse content