Government says it will solve issue of former army officers

By Ali Jassem Azzaman, December 19, 2012 The government says it is determined to solve the issue of all the officers of the former army, which was disbanded shortly after the 2003-U.S. invasion. It has set the end of 2013 to get the tens of thousands of officers either back to serve in the current [...]

Kurds agree to withdraw their militias from oil-rich Kirkuk

By Laith Jawad Kurdish leaders have agreed to withdraw their militias, known locally as peshemerga, from the oil-rich Province of Kirkuk, paving the way for a rapprochement with the central government in Baghdad. Iraqi national army had deployed troops in the province prompting the Kurds to send in their militias. Now Iraqi legislators say both [...]

Ministry receives 21 artifacts stolen from Iraq Museum in 2003

By Adel Kadhem Azzaman, December 17, 2012 The Spanish ambassador to Iraq has handed over 21 archaeological pieces to the Ministry of culture and Antiquities. The artifacts were among the thousands of items that were looted from the Iraq Museum shortly after the 2003-U.S. invasion. The ambassador,  Jose Turpin, presented the artifacts to the Iraqi [...]

More than 5 million Iraqi children lack basic rights

By Laith Jawad Azzaman, December 15, 2012 At least 32 per cent of children in Iraq live in conditions which lack basic rights and services, a new survey has revealed. The survey, conducted by U.N.’s children organization (UNICEF) and the Iraqi Ministry of Planning, is the first detailed study of the conditions of Iraqi children [...]

Syria and its surprises

By Fatih Abdulsalam Azzaman, December 13, 2012 The whole of Syria is now in a state of faint. There is great risk that this state of affairs will continue and aggravate. For Syria to awake and pursue normal life is hard to see. So, wait for more surprises as the fighting approaches the capital Damascus [...]

Government threatens to slash Kurds’ quota of oil royalties

By Zeena Sami Azzaman, December 12, 2012 The feud between the central government and its regional counterpart in the Kurdish north is spilling over to finances. As tensions between the sides are mounting and fears of a military confrontation rising, the government in Baghdad has said it intends to slash Kurdish share of Iraqi oil [...]

Basra’s governor to visit U.S.

By Basem al-Rikabi The governor of the southern Province of Basra Khalaf Abdulsamad is visiting the U.S. this week for talks with American firms willing to invest in Iraq. Basra is currently Iraq’s most promising province for foreign entrepreneurs. In addition to federal government allocations, the province has its own budget which it draws from [...]

Ancient language makes comeback in Iraq

By Adel Kadhem Azzaman, December 9, 2012 At least one of the Middle East’s ancient languages may not be doomed to extinction, thanks to the liberal tendencies that have been a characteristic of Iraq’s educational system in the past few years. Since the downfall of the regime of Saddam Hussein, the government has removed restrictions [...]

Iraqis cheer Merril Lynch’s economic growth estimates for their country

By Shaymaa Adel Azzaman, December 8, 2012 Iraqis of different walks of life have welcomed a report by an American bank that their country will see the fastest growth in the world this year and in 2013. The bank, Merrill Lynch, one of the world’s leading financial management and advisory companies, has said in a [...]

Ancient language on verge of extinction in Iraq

By Khaula al-Ukaili Azzaman, December 6, 2012 A secretive Iraqi community and its distinct language are both feared to disappear, specialists say. The group, known as the Mandeans, have Aramaic as their mother tongue and have been pursuing their own religion, which historians trace to John the Baptist. But only a few thousand Mandeans have [...]