06 May 2021
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The Iraqi parliament on Saturday organized a ceremony to honor Qasem Soleimani, the top Iranian commander who was killed in a US drone strike on January 3 in Baghdad. The parliament also paid tribute to Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, an Iraqi Shiite militia leader who was killed in the same US strike. A photo exhibition of the two men was held as part of the commemoration ceremony. Reasons behind the National al-Sanad bloc, which is close to Iran, organizing the ceremony…
Baghdad (CNN)A rocket attack on Baghdad's diplomatic Green Zone Sunday night was "a terrorist act" that undermines Iraq's international reputation, the country's president says. Eight rockets were fired at the heavily fortified area, with at least one Iraqi soldier injured when a rocket landed near an Iraqi security checkpoint, according to a statement from the Iraqi military.   The military said most of the rockets hit the Qadisiya residential neighborhood near the US Embassy, damaging several buildings and cars.  …
Iraq is moving forward with plans to devalue its currency by nearly 23 percent in response to a dire financial crisis — an extreme policy measure that will not come close to balancing a 2021 budget projected to authorize record spending. According to a provisional draft of the 2021 budget, which was widely leaked on Thursday, the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) will move its long-standing currency peg from 1,182 Iraqi dinars per dollar to 1,450 dinars per dollar. Iraq…
Large posters and banners of slain Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani were hoisted inside the halls of the Iraqi parliament ahead of preparations to mark the one-year-anniversary of his assassination by US forces, according to a video being shared online. According to parliamentary sources, Iraqi MPs plan to hold a memorial to mark the one-year anniversary of Soleimani’s death alongside Iraqi paramilitary commander Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes who were both killed on Jan. 3, 2020. The sources added that official invitations were sent…
BAGHDAD – A leaked draft of Iraq’s state budget sent Iraqis into a panic on Thursday as it confirmed the government’s intention to devalue the national currency, the Iraqi dinar, and cut salaries to cope with the impact of a severe economic crisis. Discussions about devaluaing the Iraqi dinar, which has been pegged to the dollar for decades, have been going on for weeks as the government worked to finalise the 2021 budget. The draft law, which has to first…
BAGHDAD/ERBIL - The street value of Iraq's currency is dropping, as markets anticipate the likelihood the dinar will soon be devalued in response to a dire economic crisis. Money exchangers in Iraq on Monday were charging 1,300 Iraqi dinars for each U.S. dollar, compared to the Central Bank of Iraq's (CBI) official rate of 1,182 dinars per dollar — the widest spread between market rates and the bank's official "window" rate since December 2016, according to an Iraq Oil Report…
Iraq's foreign exchange reserves decreased 12.5 per cent during the first quarter of 2020 to 68.5 trillion dinars ($57.5 billion) down from 78.25 trillion dinars ($65.75 billion) in the last quarter of 2019, the Iraqi Central Organisation for Statistics (COS) said. COS added in a statement that the country's internal public debt has increased from 38.33 trillion dinars ($32.21 billion) in Q4 of 2019 to 43.45 trillion dinars ($36.51 billion) in Q1 2020. The decline in foreign exchange reserves coincided…
Anti-government protesters in Iraq’s southern Dhi Qar province ended on Sunday a year of popular demonstrations that had swept the city of Nasiriyah. The development took place amid reports that government authorities and groups affiliated to the Sadrist movement, of cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, had threatened prominent activists. The demonstrators had also likely cleared the protests sites in order to “catch their breath” and seriously consider the possibility of fielding candidates in next year’s June parliamentary elections. The candidates would be…
BALAD, Iraq (Reuters) - Last month, Iraqi authorities gave families displaced by the war against Islamic State just 48 hours to pack up and leave the Al-Ishaki camp before it was closed. When the deadline expired, pick-up trucks and military vehicles arrived to take about 200 people back to their hometown. Taama al-Owaisi and others who had lived for years in the camps did not want to leave but they say they were forced to. An uncertain future awaits them…
KURDISH Peshmerga forces threatened to turn against the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in northern Iraq today as anti-government protests continued across the autonomous region in an uprising against corruption. The warning was issued by Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) affiliated Peshmerga in the town of Chamchamal in Slemani province, who said they would refuse orders to open fire on protesters in what could be a turning point in the widening protests. At least two people have been shot dead in…
Morning mass in Karemlash, an Iraqi village once held by Islamic State jihadists, is usually a sombre affair. But this week, elderly parishioners could rejoice: Pope Francis is coming to Iraq next year. "We're all so happy. We have been waiting for this for so long," said 45-year-old Adiba Henna, smiling in the cold air after a prayer service at St. Adday Chaldean Church, in the Nineveh highlands of northern Iraq. "Every time he visits a country, we think, why…

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