2023 Wedding Fire Tragedy in Hamdaniya, Iraq

Above: IID delivering emergency medical aid to burn victims being treated at Al-Jumohri hospital in Mosul, Iraq.

From Right: IID founder Ayad Saleh, with Dr. Sahar at Al-Jumohri hospital, the only medical facility in Mosul equipped to treat burn victims.

Veterans Rebuilding Life (VRL) in partnership with the Iraqi Institution for Development (IID) rushed to aid victims of the catastrophic event that killed and injured over 250 people when a fire erupted in a wedding hall in the Christian town of Hamdania, also known as Qaraqosh in north-eastern Iraq. The bride and groom survived, but lost many of immediate family members, relatives, and friends to the fire.


“Had it not been for your supplies today, we would have next to nothing to attend to burn victims.”

Dr. Sahar, MD, Al-Jumohri Hospital


Hamdaniya is no stranger to disaster. In August of 2014, ISIS bulldozed through the districts causing 50,000 Christians to flee in a mass exodus within hours. When ISIS was defeated in 2016, less than half of Hamdaniya’s population returned. Weary of reoccurring terrorist attacks, many fled abroad.

VRL’s partner, IID, immediately rushed to the scene, donating blood, driving the injured to hospitals and doing a rapid assessment of the most urgent needs. Hamdaniya’s one hospital did not have a burn unit, and was critically under-equipped to meet the sudden high demand.

Veterans Rebuilding Life donated over 13,000 units of burn ointments, catheters, bandages, painkillers, antibiotic creams and other miscellaneous medical items delivered to Al-Jumohri hospital, the only facility in Iraq equipped to treat burn victims. IID has assisted more than 20 burn victims to date, and continues distributing aid.

Dr. Sahar, chief resident of the ER in Al-Jumohri hospital, expressed relief and gratitude: “Had it not been for your supplies today, we would have next to nothing to attend to burn victims.” said Dr. Sahar. We wish to thank our donors for helping the victims of this heartbreaking tragedy to recover and rebuild their lives.