ENHANCE UNDERSTANDING

ISHM: November 16 – 30, 2023

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Key Takeaways:

  • New U.S. Sanctions Target Militias; PM Rejects Resignations of Three Ministers; Election of New Speaker Delayed; KDP Returns to Kirkuk – On November 17, the U.S. State and Treasury Departments imposed new sanctions against the Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada and Kataib Hezbollah militias over their role in attacking U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria. On November 20, PM Mohammed al-Sudani rejected the resignations of three cabinet ministers (of Planning, Industry, and Culture) who protested the Federal Supreme Court’s ruling on November 14 that ended the tenure of speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi. On November 22, Iraq’s parliament held an extraordinary session to elect a new speaker to replace Halbousi, but the legislature decided to postpone the vote “until political balance is achieved,” a statement posted on its website said. This week, the Coordination Framework (CF) said it received the names of several candidates to replace Halbousi that were presented by Sunni parties, but political sources said CF leaders prefer to delay the selection of a new speaker until after the December provincial election. On November 26, the Kurdistan Democratic Party inaugurated its first office in Kirkuk since 2017, when its former office was seized by Iraqi government forces in the aftermath of the Kurdish independence referendum. In other developments, on November 26, Ninewa governor Najm al-Jubouri submitted his resignation to PM Sudani, who appointed the head of the Ninewa reconstruction committee, Abdul-Qadir al-Dekhil, as the new governor. On November 27, PM Sudani received a phone call from UK Foreign Minister David Cameron during which he was invited to visit the UK early next year. more…
  • Militias Halt Attacks On U.S. Forces, Reveal The Specific Factions Behind Them – On November 25, a spokesman for Kataib Hezbollah announced that Iraqi militias have decided to halt their attacks on U.S. forces in bases in Iraq and Syria in observance of the truce between Hamas and Israel. The spokesman revealed that attacks carried out under the banner of “the Islamic Resistance in Iraq” were performed by four specific militia groups: Kataib Hezbollah, Ansar Allah al-Awfiya, Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba, and Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada. Between November 17 – 23, these militias had conducted at least 13 new attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria, including an attack with multiple short-range ballistic missiles, bringing the number of attacks since October 17 to 73, of which 36 were in Iraq and 37 were in Syria. The U.S. responded with multiple retaliatory strikes against militia convoys and buildings on November 21 – 22, killing at least eight militiamen. In other developments, on November 27, PUKMedia reported that Peshmerga Affairs Minister, Shorash Ismail, has returned to his office and resumed his work at the ministry nearly 18 months after he had submitted his resignation amid political disputes between the PUK and KDP. more…
  • Iraq Asks ICC To Help Prosecute ISIS Crimes; Report Surveys Climate Impact On Small Farmers; Ministry Bans NGOs From Working With Universities – On November 26, PM Sudani urged the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to support Iraq in identifying those who provided support to terrorists in Iraq, including organizations and governments, in order to sue them in Iraq courts. The meeting comes two months after the UN Security Council voted, on Iraq’s request, to extend the mandate of the United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Daesh (UNITAD) for only one more year. On November 26, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) published a new report about the negative impact of climate change on agricultural yield and its contribution to secondary displacement. The report found that 6 out 10 farmers surveyed across four provinces were forced by water shortage to plant on a smaller portion of their land in 2023. The findings also point to the Ninewa Plains region as “an emerging hotspot, with interlinkages between climate, peace and security exacerbating community trust and movement intentions.” On November 30, news reports said that Iraq’s Ministry of Higher Education has instructed universities to stop dealing with several local and international NGOs, including one United Nations agency. The letter specifically requires universities to report financial grants provided directly or indirectly by the U.S. State Department. The move came days after Qais al-Khazali, the leader of Asaib Ahl al-Haq, to which the minister belongs, accused U.S.-funded programs of undermining “the values, faith, and traditions” of Iraq’s society. more…
  • Ernst And Young To Help Modernize State-Owned Banks; Iraq Creates Carbon Credit Trading Company – On November 27, representatives from Ernst and Young met with PM Sudani and senior Iraqi finance and banking officials to present an eight-month plan for reforming the country’s banking sector, starting with the state-owned Rafidain Bank. Sudani’s office said the plan involves introducing structural reforms and modern technologies to create a bank “capable of meeting the demands of contemporary global banking conditions.” On November 27, the Iraqi government decided to establish a state-owned company to manage trade in carbon credits. An advisor to Sudani said the move will allow Iraq to sell carbon credits resulting from the country’s carbon emission-reducing activities, adding that Iraq is working on its first such trade to bring Canadian financing to implement a natural gas pipeline extension project that will reduce the burning of diesel fuel. In other developments, on November 17, Iraq Oil Report said that Iraq’s Oil Ministry approved a plan by Japanese oil company Inpex to sell its 40% stake in the Block 10 (Eridu) oil exploration project. On November 28, the Iraqi government decided to separate the management of the country’s airports from the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) and give it to the Transport Ministry’s Navigational Services Company. On November 28, Iraq’s Finance Ministry said it will release a new, IQD 1.5 trillion issue of its “Reconstruction Bonds.” more…

For more background on most of the institutions, key actors, political parties, and locations mentioned in our takeaways or in the stories that follow, see the ISHM Reference Guide.


New U.S. Sanctions Target Militias; PM Rejects Resignations of Three Ministers; Election of New Speaker Delayed; KDP Returns to Kirkuk

On November 17, the U.S. imposed new sanctions against the Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada and Kataib Hezbollah militias over their role in attacking U.S. forces in Iraq and Syria. Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada and its commander, known as Abu Ala’ al-Walai, was declared by the State Department as “specially designated global terrorists,” while a group of six individuals with ties to Kataib Hezbollah were sanctioned by the Treasury Department. A senior Treasury official said the sanctions were meant to deliver a message to Iran-backed groups “that the United States will use all available measures to hold to account any opportunistic actors who seek to exploit the situation in Gaza for their own ends.” A spokesman for Kataib Hezbollah recently revealed that attacks carried out under the banner of “the Islamic Resistance in Iraq” were performed by four specific militia groups: Kataib Hezbollah, Ansar Allah al-Awfiya, Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba, and Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada.

On November 19, a member of the parliamentary legal committee said the legislature has postponed further deliberations of the General Amnesty and Oil and Gas laws until the next legislative year. Committee member Ahmed al-Fawaz noted that these two significant bills require consensus and political agreements before they could be placed on the legislative agenda, arguing that parliament does not have enough time to vote on these bills with the approaching legislative recess. 

On November 20, an Iraqi government spokesman said that Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani had rejected the resignations that three cabinet ministers had submitted in protest of the Federal Supreme Court’s ruling on November 14 that ended the tenure of speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi. According to the spokesman, the ministers of Planning, Industry, and Culture, who are all from Halbousi’s Taqaddum party, were required to return to their ministries and resume their executive duties “immediately.”

On November 20, Iraq’s parliament issued a letter officially declaring the membership of former speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi to be terminated as of November 14, when Iraq’s Federal Supreme Court issued a ruling to terminate his tenure in the legislature.

On November 20, Iraqi President Abul-Latif Rashid visited Azerbaijan accompanied by several Iraqi officials, including the minister of labor and social affairs, the deputy foreign affairs minister, and the heads of Iraq’s civil aviation authority and tourism commission. During the visit, Rashid had talks with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, and the Iraqi delegation signed several memorandums of understanding with their Azerbaijani counterparts. The agreements deal with cooperation in air transport services, political consultations, tourism and cultural affairs, and labor safety and social protection. From Baku, Rashid flew to neighboring Armenia, though there were no public statements about the details of the president’s talks there. Finally, on November 30, Rashid flew to the United Arab Emirates to participate in COP28, which is set to begin on Friday. Rashid is accompanied by Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein and Environment Minister Nizar Amedi. 

On November 22, Iraq’s parliament held an extraordinary session to elect a new speaker, after the country’s Federal Supreme Court had ruled  on November 14 to end the tenure of speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi. Lawmakers, however, ended up approving a motion to postpone the vote “until political balance is achieved,” a statement posted on the legislature’s website said. During the session, attended by 180 lawmakers, parliament approved a proposed amendment to the law governing the work of Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC). The new amendment allows the current IHEC board of commissioners to continue its work until the results of the upcoming provincial elections, and parliamentary elections in the Kurdistan region, are ratified. During the session, parliament also issued a statement condemning the U.S. airstrikes that killed and wounded several Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) fighters, calling on the Iraqi government to implement parliament’s resolution from January 2020 regarding the expulsion of U.S. military forces from Iraq.

On November 26, Ninewa governor Najm Abdullah al-Jubouri submitted his resignation to Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani after parliament rejected the government’s recommendation to exempt him from de-Baathification procedures. Jubouri was among scores of candidates in the upcoming provincial elections who were disqualified by the Justice and Accountability Commissions for ties with the Baath Party. A statement by Sudani’s office on the same day said the prime minister accepted Jubouri’s resignation, and subsequent reports said he appointed the head of the Ninewa reconstruction committee, Abdul-Qadir al-Dekhil, as the new governor of the northern province. 

On November 26, news reports said that the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) has inaugurated its first office in the city of Kirkuk since 2017, when its former office was seized by Iraqi government forces in the aftermath of the Kurdish independence referendum. The development comes a month after the party decided to give the contested building of its former headquarters to the city’s university as a gift. At the time, the Baghdad government and Arab and Turkmen political figures in Kiruk welcomed the move by the KDP, and credited KDP leader Masoud Barzani with defusing the tense situation. The building in question was a main factor in deadly violence that erupted in Kirkuk in early September and left at least four dead and 15 wounded. 

On November 27, a prominent Sunni Arab political party said it asked Iraq’s Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) to remove the Taqaddum party of ousted parliament speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi from the ballots in the upcoming provincial elections. The al-Hal party, whose Karbouli family founders are former allies-turned-rivals of the ousted speaker, pointed in a letter to IHEC that the 2015 Political Parties Law states that to found a party, a person must not be guilty of committing crimes or misdemeanors. The letter goes on to argue that Taqaddum’s registration must be revoked following the Federal Supreme Court’s ruling that found Halbousi guilty of forgery. 

On November 27, Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani received a phone call from UK Foreign Minister David Cameron during which they discussed the war in Gaza, efforts to prevent the violence from spreading, and Baghdad’s committeeman to the safety of foreign military advisers in Iraq. A statement by Sudani’s office added that the UK minister also invited the Iraqi prime minister to visit the UK early next year.

On November 27, the Coordination Framework (CF) said that its leaders, joined by Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani, held a meeting during which they discussed preparations for the upcoming provincial elections, and reviewed several names presented as candidates to replace former parliament speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi. The CF statement did not reveal the names of the candidates, who were presented by the pirates representing “the Sunni community” but CF sources said the political parties presented five names, which include Ziyad al-Janabi, Abdul-Karim Abtan, and Yahya al-Mohammadi from Halbousi’s Taqaddum party, Salim al-Issawi from Khamis al-Khanjar’s Siyada coalition, and Mahmoud al-Mashhadani from Muthanna al-Jubouri’s al-Azm party. Other reports point to seven candidates, adding Shalan al-Krayim from Taqaddum and Khalid al-Daraji from al-Azm. According to a report by al-Mada, a senior CF member told the newspaper that CF leaders prefer to delay the selection of a new speaker until after the December provincial election.

Sources cited in this section include: Reuters, Shafaq, Rudaw, ISHM archive, NRT, al-Sumaria, NINA, INA, Mawazin, Iraq’s parliament, Iraqi PM’s office, al-Taghier, Shafaq. 


Militias Halt Attacks On U.S. Forces, Reveal The Specific Factions Behind Them

On November 16, unidentified gunmen shot and seriously wounded Sahrab Rahmai, an Iranian Kurdish activist and lawyer outside his residence in the city of Erbil, a press freedom watchdog said. According to a statement by Metro Center, the targeted activist had received multiple death threats because of his efforts to track and expose attacks and assassinations against Iranian activists in the Kurdistan region. 

On November 17, security sources in the Kurdistan region said that the Hareer airbase in Erbil, which hosts U.S. military personnel, was the target of a new attack with an explosive drone. On the same day, the so-called “Islamic Resistance in Iraq” security said it attacked Ain al-Asad airbase in Anbar province, which also hosts U.S. military personnel, with two explosive drones. During the following two days, the same militia claimed two additional attacks with explosive drones on the Tanf base in Syria, which also hosts U.S. military personnel, and the Hareer base. Then on November 21, Ain al-Asad was attacked again, this time with three rockets, resulting in injuries among 10 U.S. military personnel. Meanwhile, the group also claimed another attack with rockets on al-Shaddadi base in Syria. The U.S. responded to these attacks, which it said involved the use of short-range ballistic missiles, with multiple retaliatory strikes over the next two days. On November 21, Iraqi security sources said that U.S. military aircraft struck vehicles belonging to the Kataib Hezbollah militia on a main highway between Baghdad and Anbar province, resulting in at least two casualties among militiamen. The U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) confirmed the incident, saying that  an AC-130 gunship “engaged individuals responsible for launching a missile attack” on Ain al-Asad base. On the following day, U.S. forces conducted additional strikes “against two facilities in Iraq” that were “in direct response to the attacks against U.S. and Coalition forces by Iran and Iran-backed groups,” a subsequent CENTCOM statement said. The U.S. strikes left at least eight dead and four wounded, a statement by the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) acknowledged. The Iraqi government condemned the U.S. strikes as a violation of Iraq’s sovereignty. Also on November 22, security sources in Erbil said that the Hareer base was attacked again with explosive drones in two separate incidents, adding that the drones crashed before reaching their targets. Then on November 24, U.S. military officials told reporters that militias backed by Iran attacked U.S. forces with drones and rockets four times in Iraq (at Hareer and Ain al-Asad) and Syria during the previous 24 hours. According to Iraqi sources, all the drones aimed at Hareer and Ain al-Asad were shot down by the bases’ defenses. Other local security sources claimed one of the attacks on Ain al-Asad involved a direct assault by militiamen who fired rocket propelled grenades and machine gun fire at the base’s observation towers. The latest attacks, which did not result in casualties, brought the number of attacks on U.S. forces since October 17 to 73, of which 36 were in Iraq and 37 were in Syria. According to a statement by a U.S. military spokesman, there were no attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq or Syria since Monday. This came as a spokesman for the Kataib Hezbollah militia announced that Iraqi militias have decided to halt their attacks on U.S. forces in observance of the truce between Hamas and Israel. The spokesman revealed that attacks carried out under the banner of “the Islamic Resistance in Iraq” were performed by four specific militia groups: Kataib Hezbollah, Ansar Allah al-Awfiya, Harakat Hezbollah al-Nujaba, and Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada.

On November 17, a senior Iraqi military spokesman said that a joint force of the Iraqi army’s 6th division and local Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) killed two ISIS militants and injured a third during an operation in the Tarmiyah district, north of Baghdad.   

On November 17, hundreds of supporters of the Taqaddum party of ousted parliament speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi demonstrated on the streets of Fallujah and blocked a number of main streets in the city to express their opposition to the Federal Supreme Court ruling that ended Halbousi’s tenure in the legislature. 

On November 20, security sources in Kirkuk said that unidentified gunmen opened fire on the office of the second deputy speaker of parliament, Shakhwan Abdullah, in a driveby shooting in the northern city. A statement by Abdullah’s office said the building’s guards exchanged fire with the assailants, hitting their vehicle, before they escaped from the scene. 

On November 20, Iraqi security sources said that military leadership appointed new top security commanders for Anbar and Kirkuk provinces. According to the sources, Major General Raad al-Jubouri will take over the Anbar Operations Command while Major General Salih Hiriz will become the new chief of the Kirkuk Operations Command.  

On November 26, security sources in Najaf said that at least ten people were injured in violent armed clashes that erupted between two quarreling tribes in al-Abbasiya subdistrict. The sources added that government security forces intervened to halt the fighting. To the southwest, in Dhi-Qar province, another tribal clash erupted on November 30 in the Garmat Bani Saeed subdistrict. Security sources said the fighting killed one person and seriously wounded six.

On November 27, PUKMedia reported that Peshmerga Affairs Minister, Shorash Ismail, has returned to his office and resumed his work at the ministry. Ismail had been away from the ministry for nearly 18 months, after he submitted his resignation from the cabinet of the Kurdistan regional government (KRG) as a result of political disputes between his Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and the ruling KDP. According to PUKMedia, the KRG cabinet rejected the resignation, paving the way for Ismail to return to office.  

On November 27, Ninewa police said that unidentified gunmen opened fire from small arms on the local mukhtar of the Haj Ali village in the Qayyara subdistrict, south of Mosul. The attack caused serious injuries to the targeted individual.

On November 27, security sources in Dhi-Qar province said that a homemade improvised explosive device (IED) detonated under a trailer belonging to Malaysian oil company Petronas in the Qalat Sikar district, north of Nasiriyah. The attack caused material damage but did not leave casualties. 

Sources cited in this section include: al-Taghier, Metroo Center, Rudaw, Shafaq, al-Sumaria, CENTCOM, Military Times, Mawazin, al-Hurra, Dijlah, NINA, PUKMedia.


Iraq Asks ICC To Help Prosecute ISIS Crimes; Report Surveys Climate Impact On Small Farmers; Ministry Bans NGOs From Working With Universities

On November 19, the Iraqi government signed the Declaration on Children, Youth, and Climate Action, a statement by UNICEF in Iraq said. UNICEF called the signing of the Declaration by Environment Minister Nizar Amidi a “major step forward in Iraq’s efforts to respond to the impact of the global climate crisis, and in upholding priorities identified by children and youth across the world.” The Declaration, which was launched during the 2019 climate summit known as COP25 in Spain, included specific commitments by signatory governments to “consistently consider children’s specific needs, rights and perspectives in their climate policies and action at all levels,” the UNICEF statement added. 

On November 26, the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Karim Ahmad Khan, visited Baghdad and met with Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani to discuss cooperation in bringing ISIS members who committed atrocities in Iraq to justice, a statement by Sudani’s office said. During the meeting, Sudani urged the ICC to support Iraq in its mission to identify those who provided support to terrorists in Iraq, including organizations and governments, in order to sue them in Iraq courts, the statement added. The meeting comes two months after the UN Security Council voted to extend the mandate of the United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Daesh (UNITAD) for only one more year on Iraq’s request. The resolution mentioned that the Baghdad government had asked that UNITAD investigators hand over the evidence to the Iraqi authorities so they could pursue ISIS members who committed crimes and those who assisted and financed them. Since then, rights groups and members of the Yazidi community have raised concerns about the upcoming termination of UNITAD’s work in Iraq and what it means for their aspirations for justice and accountability. Iraqi authorities have apparently expressed frustration with UNITAD for refusing to share evidence gathered by the team, which in turn was worried that convictions by Iraqi courts could lead to the death penalty, which the UN opposes. 

On November 26, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) published a new report about the negative impact of Climate change on agricultural yield and its contribution to secondary displacement. The report found that 6 out 10 farmers surveyed during the study across the provinces of Anbar, Kirkuk, Ninewa and Salah ad-Din were forced by climate change to plant on a smaller portion of their land or cut back on water used in irrigation in the 2023 season. The reports also found that nearly 80% of respondents in Ninewa and Kirkuk had less to spend on food in the previous 12 months. Women were particularly affected, with the percentage reporting not earning any income rising from 6% in 2022 to 15% in 2023. The study findings also point to the Ninewa Plains region as “an emerging hotspot, with interlinkages between climate, peace and security exacerbating community trust and movement intentions.” Also in Ninewa, a quarter of respondents in Baaj said they were thinking of moving because of water shortage, while a quarter of small farmers surveyed in Sinjar and Baaj said they had to give up farming in 2023.

On November 29, a group of UN agencies operating in Iraq announced plans to launch a joint campaign to plant half a million trees across Iraq in cooperation with several ministries and government agencies in Iraq and the Kurdistan region. The campaign, which will also work with young volunteers, and the private sector…aims to tackle climate change challenges, enhance biodiversity, and improve community well-being throughout Iraq,” a statement by the UN Assistance Mission to Iraq (UNAMI) said. 

On November 30, news reports said that Iraq’s Ministry of Higher Education has instructed the country’s universities to stop dealing with several local and international NGOs, including one United Nations agency. The instructions, contained in a ministry letter dated November 22, specifically mention the following organizations: al-Amal Association, Women Freedom, Women for Peace, UPP, HIVOS, the Kurdistan Independent Media Center, Iraq Queen, Women Empowerment, and UNFPA. The letter also specifically requires universities to report any financial grants provided directly or indirectly by the U.S. State Department. An earlier ministry letter to universities, dated November 20, prohibits civil society organizations from entering any university without prior authorization from the Iraqi National Security Service. News reports point out that the instructions were issued days after Qais al-Khazali, the leader of Asaib Ahl al-Haq, to which the minister belongs, accused U.S.-funded programs of being designed to undermine “the values, faith, and traditions” of Iraq’s society.   

Sources cited in this section include: ReliefWeb, Iraqi PM’s office, Amwaj Media, ISHM archive, NRC, Ultra Iraq. 


Ernst And Young To Help Modernize State-Owned Banks; Iraq Creates Carbon Credit Trading Company

On November 17, Iraq Oil Report said that Iraq’s Oil Ministry had approved a plan by Japanese oil company Inpex to sell its stake in a southern oil exploration block. Inpex holds a 40% stake in the asset, known as Block 10 (also Eridu), which is located in Iraq’s southern desert, between Samawa and Basra provinces. The block, home to a recent oil discovery of commercial scale, is operated by Russian oil company Lukoil, which holds the other 60% stake. It is unclear who will take over Inpex’s share upon its departure from the project.

On November 22, Turkish Energy Minister, Alparslan Bayraktar, visited Baghdad for a new round of talks concerning oil, water, and trade. During his talks with Bayraktar, Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani reiterated Baghad’s interest in resuming Iraqi oil exports through Turkey, which have been halted since March, a statement by Sudani’s office said. The Iraqi prime minister also called on Turkey to show more cooperation with regard to Iraq’s share of water from the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The two sides also discussed Iraq’s Development Road project, which is of particular interest to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to Bayraktar. The Turkish minister had a separate meeting with Iraq’s Oil Minister, Hayan Abdul-Ghani that focused specifically on the oil and energy sector. There were no indications of a breakthrough in negotiations as a result of these latest meetings. 

On November 26, al-Sumaria reported that an explosion occurred at the Seneia refinery in Salah ad-Din province resulting in a fire that engulfed a furnace in one of the refinery’s units. Reports said the explosion caused injuries among refinery workers, without providing further details. Seneia is a small facility with a capacity of 20,000 barrels per day (bpd), located not far from Iraq’s northern oil hub town of Baiji. 

On November 27, representatives from Ernst and Young met with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani and senior Iraqi finance and banking officials to present their plans for reforming the country’s banking sector, starting with the state-owned Rafidain Bank. According to a statement by Sudani’s office, the global accounting and advisory company presented an eight-month plan involving a comprehensive assessment of the bank’s operations and introducing structural reforms and modern technologies to create a bank “capable of meeting the demands of contemporary global banking conditions.” The statement added that Sudani gave instructions to form a team to monitor the implementation of these reforms and adherence to the established timetables. 

On November 27, the Iraqi government decided to establish a state-owned company to manage trade in carbon credits, a statement by Prime Minister Mohammed al-Sudani’s office said. A senior advisor to Sudani said that establishing the company will allow Iraq to sell carbon credits resulting from the country’s carbon emission-reducing activities, such as clean gas and solar projects, to countries that are unable to directly reduce their emissions in line with their established commitments. The adviser, Mohammed al-Daraji, added that Iraq is working on its first such trade to bring Canadian financing to implement a natural gas pipeline extension project that will reduce the burning of diesel fuel. 

On November 28, Iraq’s Finance Ministry said it plans to release a second issue of its “Reconstruction Bonds” building on the success and high demand with which the first issue met. The new bond issue will have a total value of IQD 1.5 trillion (over $1.1 billion in the official exchange rate), a ministry statement said. The bonds will come in two denominations, IQD 1,000,000 with an annual interest rate of 8% and four-year maturity, the statement added.

On November 28, the Iraqi government decided to separate the management of the country’s airports from the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority (ICAA) and give it to the Transport Ministry’s Navigational Services Company. The latter will be renamed The General Company for Airport Management and Navigational Services and will take over all the ICAA assets and obligations related to Iraq’s airports.

Sources cited in this section include: INA, al-Sumaria, Iraq Oil Report, Iraqi PM’s office. 


Derived from firsthand accounts and Iraq-based Arabic and Kurdish news sources, the Iraq Security and Humanitarian Monitor is a free publication of the Enabling Peace in Iraq Center.


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