Syrian plane lands in Iraq’s Najaf

By Saadoun al-Jabiri Azzaman, November 25, 2014 A Syrian plane has landed in the religious city of Najaf, for the first time in three years, the head of Najaf International Airport said. Murtadha al-Mawsawi said the airport would be receiving two scheduled flights from Syria per week. “The airport has received the first flight by [...]

Up to 30,000 Iraqis jailed in the past few months

By Mohammed al-Salihi The number of Iraqis detained temporarily without trial amounts to 26,590 people in the months that have seen an upsurge in violence and the rise of the Islamic State in the country, according to Madhat al-Mahmoud, chairman of the Supreme Judicial Council. Mahmoud said in the same period 12,585 people were set [...]

Parliament to pass new oil law to reach long-term solutions to row over oil exports and royalties

By Abbas al-Baghdadi Azzaman, November 23, 2014 The Iraqi parliament has on its agenda the approval of a new draft oil law that will hopefully put in place long-term solutions to differences over distribution of oil wealth particularly with the Kurdish autonomous region. Officially called “Oil and Gas Law,” the draft legislation has been shelved [...]

Islamic State turns wrath on Sunnis

Azzaman, November 2014 Islamic State (IS) militants are Muslim Sunnis who are supposed to fight a ‘holy war’ against Shiite Muslims and other groups they see as infidels. But it seems there are no bounds to the Jihadist group’s reign of terror. IS’s machine of slaughter now does not spare Arab Sunnis opposing it. The [...]

2 senior officers assassinated in Baghdad

Azzaman, November 20, 2014 Unidentified gunmen have kidnapped and then killed an Iraqi army officer with the rank of Lt. Gen., sources said. The sources, refusing to be named for security reasons, said the gunmen broke into Lt. Gen. Tajudeen Jaafar’s house in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, and took him away. “The gunmen abducted the [...]

Iraqi province calls for more oil ‘autonomy’

By Basem al-Rikabi Azzaman, November 19, 2014 Oil producing Iraqi provinces are pressing the government to grant them a say in the royalties generated by oil sales from oil fields in their areas. Iraq’s most prolific oil province is Basra which contributes nearly 90% to the country’s oil export volume. Other southern provinces like Dhiqar [...]

Planes loaded with weapons land at airports under Islamic State control in Iraq

By Nidhal al-Laithi Azzaman, November 17, 2014 The Islamic State has been using the airports under its control for the transport of weapons to its militants in both Iraq and Syria, according to Hakim al-Zamili, the head of the Defense Commission at the Iraqi parliament. Zamili said one such plane landed in Baghdad carrying 40 [...]

Iraq’s lost opportunity

By Fatih Abdulsalam Azzaman, November 16, 2014 The sacking of scores of top military brass by Prime Minister Haider Abadi cannot be seen but as yet another lost opportunity. The order for the senior military officers to quit among them the army’s chief of staff could not have come at a worse time for the [...]

‘I like him so much,’ says Saudi King when reminded of Iraq’s top Shiite cleric Sistani

Azzaman, November 14, 2014 King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has a high opinion of Iraq’s top Shiite cleric Ayatollah Sistani, according to a statement by Iraq’s President Fuad Masum. Masum, who has just returned from a visit to Saudi Arabia in which he met with King Abdullah, is reported to have opened a new chapter [...]

Iraq seeks Saudi help to join Gulf Cooperation Council

By Nidhal al-Laithi Azzaman, November 12, 2014 Iraq is seeking Saudi help to join the six Arab Gulf states which make up the Gulf Cooperation council. The demand to join the loose political and economic alliance was made during a visit by Iraqi President Fuad Masum to Saudi Arabia. Masum spent two days in the [...]