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Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, whose government puts the costs of reconstruction at more than $88 billion, said Iraq could not rebuild without outside help.

As a three-day global reconstruction conference got underway in Kuwait, officials were seeking pledges from donors and investors to restore Iraq s devastated homes, schools, hospitals and economic infrastructure.

US officials said the United States, which occupied Iraq from 2003-2011 and now leads an worldwide coalition that provided air support against Islamic State, does not plan to pledge funds at the Kuwait conference.

Qusai Abdelfattah, director general at the planning ministry, said US$22 billion of those funds were needed immediately and the rest for the medium term.

Iraq has published a list of some 157 projects for which it is seeking investment.

Officials said housing was an urgent priority - the war damaged some 138,000 housing units, of which half had been completely destroyed.

A member of Iraqi federal police sits next to destroyed buildings in the Old City of Mosul on July 23 after ISIS fighters were defeated in the region. He added there were early indications that some states are willing to do so.

The United Nations has warned that the failure of the global community and major powers in the West to help Iraq could lead to renewed instability.

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The meeting, which brings together several economic powers, as well as regional and worldwide organisations, will discuss the required contributions to rebuilding Iraq after many years of war and conflict, reports Xinhua news agency.

"Today's announcement will contribute to the reconstruction of critical services in areas that have been liberated from Daesh and will concretely encourage women's empowerment in Iraq by promoting their participation in reconciliation efforts and advancing the economic involvement of women in their communities", Freeland said.

The State Department has said it will not be making "direct contributions" to finance the reconstruction efforts but that over 150 American companies would travel to Kuwait as part of its private sector drive for the conference.

Iraq reopened to foreign investment after 2003, with most spent on increasing its oil and natural gas production.

Iraq has suffered from decades of war and it is striking that it is holding its reconstruction conference in Kuwait, which it invaded in 1990, leading to defeat by a USA -led coalition and more than a decade of sanctions.

Iraq has been dogged for decades by violence and instability.

Iraq reopened to foreign investment after the 2003 US invasion, but the vast majority of the billions of dollars invested went to increasing its oil and natural gas production.


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