Central Bank of Iraq Auctions $193,912,578 on 13 February 2018

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Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) The Central Bank of Iraq (CBI) currency auction on February 13 registered $193,912,578 in sales, a -1.82% volume decline from the US $197,498,160 sold by Iraqi Dinar, credit and transfer at the previous auction held on February 12.

The latest auction was attended by 45 banks and 9 remittance companies. The same institutions attended the auction held on February 13 compared to the previous auction.

Data for the February 13 auction was made public by CBI Announcement Number 3634.

Dollar sales in the in the period January 1, 2018 to February 13, 2018 saw an increase of -1% compared to the sales of US $4.62 billion in the same period in 2017. The total amount of US currency sold by CBI in the calendar year 2017 was US $15.7 billion.

An analysis of the monthly dollar sales by CBI since January 2016 reveals highly fluctuating volumes. During the period from January 2016 to February 2018, sales of US dollars averaged US $1.81 billion per month. Peak volumes were reached in May this year when sales touched US $2.3 billion.

2017 January 2.2 –
2017 February 2 -9%
2017 March 2.1 5%
2017 April 1.8 -14%
2017 May 2.3 28%
2017 June 0.6 -74%
2017 July 2.2 267%
2017 August 2.1 -5%
2017 September 1 -52%
2017 October 2.2 120%
2017 November 1.9 -14%
2017 December 1.9 0%
2018 January 2.2 16%
2018 February 0.8 -64%


Source :  Iraqi News

Iraqi parliament committee: corpses continue to come out of Mosul rubbles

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Mosul (IraqiNews.com) Relief teams in Mosul continue to extract corpses of civilians killed during the war against Islamic State militants on  a daily basis, and ambiguity persists as the total of bodies expected.

Ikhnews.com website quoted Abdul-Rahim al-Shamri, a member of the Iraqi parliament’s Human Rights Committee, saying in press statements that “civil defense teams and municipal workers continue on a  daily basis to extract civilians’ corpses from the under the rubbles of Mosul city caused by the international coalition and Islamic State’s explosives”.

According to al-Shamri, “most of the corpses is concentrated in the Old City in western Mosul”.

“The number of civilian martyrs is still unknown due to the absence of an official statistics from the local and central government, but they can be counted in thousands according to estimates and eye-witnesses”, said al-Shamri.

“The extent of damage and death toll is much larger in…the Old City,” said the parliament member.

As Iraqi troops recaptured areas held by Islamic State militants since 2014, they have regularly run into mass graves of civilians and security agents executed by militants over accusations of fleeing the group’s havens or collaborating with security forces.

Iraqi troops recaptured Mosul in July after more than eight months of operations. It was the place from where Islamic State declared its self-styled “caliphate” in June 2014.

Iraq’s war against the Islamic State displaced millions of civilians both inside and outside the country, and left thousands dead.

Iraq declared victory over Islamic State last Saturday, ending a three-year war to bring down the group’s self-styled “caliphate” declared from Nineveh’s Mosul in 2014. Security continues to comb recaptured areas for remnant cells.


Source :  Iraqi News

Police conscript killed in armed attack near house, west of Baghdad

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Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) A police conscript has been killed as gunmen opened fire against him in west of Baghdad, a security source said on Tuesday.

Speaking to Baghdad Today website, the source said, “unidentified gunmen opened fire against a police conscript in al-Bakriya region, west of Baghdad.”

“The victim succumbed to death near his house,” the source added.

Earlier today, a bomb explosion took place in al-Radwaniya district, west Baghdad, leaving a civilian killed and five others wounded. Moreover, two other civilians were wounded as a bomb went off in al-Rashdiya neighborhood, north of Baghdad.

A total of 115 Iraqi civilians, excluding policemen, were killed and another 250 injured in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq in January 2018, according to casualty figures recorded by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

Baghdad was the worst affected governorate, with 323 civilian casualties (90 killed, 233 injured). Diyala followed, with 8 killed and 15 injured; and Nineveh, with 13 killed and 7 injured.

As many as 3,298 civilians were killed and 4,781 others were wounded in 2017, excluding Anbar civilian casualty figures for November and December, which are not available, UNAMI said in a report in December.

Source :  Iraqi News

Iraqi official: tribal reconciliation should precede IS families repatriation

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Anbar (IraqiNews.com) Officials at Iraq’s Anbar province have recommended to resolve tribal disputes at the province before pushing forward with the repatriation of displaced civilians linked with Islamic State militants.

Baghdad Today quoted Naeem al-Kaoud, chairman of Anbar’s security committee, saying that “any decision to return Daesh (Islamic State) families could be catastrophic”.

According to al-Kaoud, “the rule at tribal areas is that anybody who commits a killing, his family is expelled until a reconciliation is reached”.

He added that, “until present, there is no framework for tribal reconciliation, and the government is required to sponsor that issue”.

Kaoud argued that “certain parties want to accelerate the repatriation of refugees to the province for political reasons to use those families’ votes in elections”.

Iraq declared victory over Islamic State militants in December, ending months of military operations to retake areas occupied by the group since 2014. Anbar’s Rawa was the last IS bastion recaptured by Iraqi forces.

But many officials and observers have voiced concern over a wave of unrest as the families of civilians slain by the extremist group could seek revenge from others that had some of their members drafted by the group.

Iraqi local authorities had reportedly isolated IS fighters’ families at some provinces and prepared for their social and psychological rehabilitation before returning to their home regions.

Source :  Iraqi News

Kurdish airport denies reports of partial lift of Iraqi embargo

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Sulaimaniyah (IraqiNews.com) Kurdistan Region’s Sulaimaniyah Airport has denied reports that the central government in Baghdad had partially lifted an embargo it had it had imposed on flights to and from the facility.

In a statement on Tuesday, the airport’s press service said it had not yet received any response from the Iraqi government regarding the lifting of the embargo.

Some media outlets had circulated a government bulletin telling that Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi had approved flight exceptions for Kurds eager to perform Islamic “Umra” pilgrimage (performed in the holy lands in Saudi Arabia).

The Baghdad-based Iraqi government had imposed an embargo on flights on Kurdistan’s Sulaimaniyah and Erbil airports following a vote for independence the autonomous region’s government ran in September, which Baghdad deemed illegal.

Recent reports have pointed to imminent talks between both governments to resolve pending disputes over the administration of the region’s airports as well as other contentious subjects.

As part of talks to end the crisis, Baghdad has asked to hand over management of the airports to its central aviation authorities.

In January, Shafaq News quoted Taher Abdullah, Sulaimaniyah Airport chief, saying that passengers numbers at the terminal declined by 86% after the embargo. He said that the airport had used to record the arrival of 50.000 per month before the embargo, which declined after the measure to 6000-7000 per month.

Iraqi Alqurtas News quoted Abdullah saying on the same occasion that the airport recorded the entrance and exit of 485000 passengers in 2017, a drop of 7 percent from the preceding year.


Source :  Iraqi News

U.S., Iraq sign USD3 bn memo for transport projects

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Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) The United States and Iraq signed on Tuesday a memorandum by which the latter receives USD3 billion in financial aid for transportation and other reconstruction-related projects.

The declaration, quoted by Sputnik news agency, was made by U.S. State Secretary Rex Tillerson during a conference of donors to Iraq reconstruction which began in Kuwait on Monday.

Tillerson said the memo, signed by U.S. bank Exim and the Iraqi finance ministry, provides for USD3 billion for transport and other projects in Iraq.

He said U.S. firms had previously signed a deal worth USD2 billion for the Iraqi electricity sector, adding that another project worth USD350 million would see works starting soon.

Tillerson also reiterated the U.S. commitment to supporting Iraq’s stability and voiced backing for the government’s declared fight against corruption.

Iraq has said it hopes to collect nearly USD100 billion to rehabilitate the infrastructure and economy of the country ravaged by a three-year war against Islamic State militants.

Iraq declared in December the recapture of all territories occupied by the group in 2014.


Source :  Iraqi News

22 people found hiding in cement mixer at border in Kalba

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Customs officials foil infiltration attempt by 21 men and a woman, arrest driver

Sharjah: Customs officials at the Khatam-Maliha border in Kalba, Sharjah, arrested an Asian driver after he attempted to smuggle 22 persons, including a woman, inside a cement mixer truck into the UAE.

The attempt was foiled last week after the driver arrived at the border from a neighbouring country.

An X-ray machine scan showed that 22 persons, including an African woman, were hiding inside the cement mixer.

A police official told Gulf News: “When customs officials saw them inside the cement mixer at the X-ray scanner, they were stunned.

The driver of the vehicle was asked to open the top cover of the mixer and officials asked the persons inside to come out one by one.”

Officers from the Kalba police station were called in to the scene to secure the place and supervise the operation.

The suspects — Asians and one African woman — have been taken into police custody.

The case has been referred to the Public Prosecution for further action.

“The customs employees foiled the human smuggling attempt … these persons exposed themselves to danger by hiding inside the mixer, hoping to evade the customs checkpoint,” the official said.

The operation was carried out by the Federal Customs Authority and the Sharjah Ports Authority.

Ali Bin Sabeeh Al Kaabi, chairman of the Federal Customs Authority, said the foiling of the human smuggling attempt reflects the high level of coordination between the federal and local customs officials who exchange information about such activities promptly. It also showed the vigil maintained by customs officers and observers at checkpoints and their keenness to protect the borders and preserve the security of UAE society.

Al Kaabi said the federal authority had issued alerts to all local customs departments regarding the methods used by people to enter the country illegally or smuggle goods in.


Source :  http://gulfnews.com