Red Cross Says Iraqis Still Lack Basic Services

GENEVA (AP) — The humanitarian situation in Iraq is being described as one of the most critical in the world.

That assessment comes from the International Committee of the Red Cross, which says the current conflict has worsened the impact of previous wars and years of international sanctions.

It says many Iraqis still lack access to basic health care, sanitation and clean water, five years after the U.S.-led invasion to topple Saddam Hussein.

The Red Cross says Iraqi hospitals lack qualified staff and basic drugs. It notes that 20,000 doctors have left the country, while more than 2,200 doctors and nurses have been killed and more than 250 kidnapped since 2003.

It also says water supplies have deteriorated over the past year, causing shortages and forcing millions to rely on poor-quality water supplies.