Training underway to retake Mosul from Islamic State militants

By Samer Ilyas Azzaman, December 12, 2014 Prime Minister Haider Abadi has revealed that military plans are underway for an assault on the northern city of Mosul to retake it from Islamic State (IS) militants. IS, also known as ISIS, routed several Iraqi army division in its lightning attacks in June, occupying Mosul, Iraq’s second [...]

Iraqi security forces reported to have “300,000 ghost personnel” on payroll

By Abbas Baghdadi Azzaman, December 10, 2014 Prime Minister Haider Abadi is fighting a two-pronged war at two different battlefields and both of them are sapping his country’s resources. With oil prices plummeting by up to 40% since he took office and spending skyrocketing to cover a ferocious war with Islamic State militants, he wants [...]

More than 1 million Iranians flock to religious city in south

By Husain Madhloum Azzaman, December 9, 2014 More than one million Iranian pilgrims are taking part in the religious festival commemorating the death of the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson, Imam Hussein, Muslim Shiites most revered saint. The influx is the largest ever in modern history by Iranian pilgrims in one single religious ceremony in Iraq. They [...]

Waves of pilgrims march towards holy city of Karbala

By Mohammed Dhaher Azzaman, December 8, 2014 Some say they are seven millions others say they can even be more but whatever the estimate it must be the largest gathering of people in one single spot in the world. At least one million pilgrims are said to have poured from Iran to commemorate one of [...]

Integrity commission tracks down Saddam Hussein’s ‘hidden treasure’

By Adel Kadhim Azzaman, December 7, 2014 Iraq’ Integrity Commission says it has traced at least $1 billion in cash, jewelry as well as other precious items, which were stashed away by former president Saddam Hussein and one of his half-brothers. The commission said $500 million which presumably were deposited Swiss banks and held by [...]

Which Iraqi ministries are the most corrupt?

By Abbas al-Baghdadi Azzaman, December 5, 2014 Corruption is common in all government institutions but it is most rampant in the ministries of defense, municipalities, oil, trade and interior, the anti-corruption parliamentary commission has found. “Large Iraqi factions protect those taking bribes and cover them,” the commission said. “In fact (institutions) have become geniuses in [...]

Former Iraqi president and prime minster spent $750 million in two years

By Ali Latif Azzaman, December With oil prices plunging and the government forced to revise its budget estimates for 2015, Prime Minister Haider Abadi is urging tight-belt policies. In a statement early this week he said salaries of senior government officials, including his cabinet, should be slashed by 50 per cent with the start of [...]

Iraqi PM sets detainees free and lowers salaries of his ministers by half

By Mohammed al-Salehi Azzaman, December 3, 2014 Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi has ordered the release of detainees incarcerated without trial and any prisoner whom which courts could not find guilty. Abadi’s order comes as part of his government’s measures to appease Iraqi Sunnis who felt marginalized during the eight-year rule of his processor Nouri [...]

Islamic State transports 1 million tons of Iraqi grain to Syria

By Salam Abdulshammari Azzaman, December 1, 2014 The Islamic State controls Iraq’s bread basket and has been emptying its silos and moving food and grains to Syria, according to Agriculture Minister Falah al-Zaidan. “The organization of Daeesh (the local appellation for the Islamic State) has transported about one million tons of wheat and barley from [...]

Baghdad’s untreated sewage water dumped in Tigris River

By Dalya Ahmed Azzaman, November 30, 2014 Baghdad municipality dumps more than 1 million cubic meters of untreated water into the Tigris River every day, Environment Minister Qutaiba al-Jibouri said. Jibouri said the huge volume of sewage that runs into the river has grave health consequences and has polluted the Tigris “We hold Baghdad Municipality [...]