Iraq - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Iraq

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In Iraq, no resting place for coronavirus dead

Mar 30, 2020 - 11:57 AM

Iraqi religious authorities, tribes, and townspeople are sending the bodies of COVID-19 victims back to hospital morgues, where they are piling up

EMPTY. A mask-clad woman walks along an empty street in Iraq's southern city of Basra on March 17, 2020. Photo by Hussein Faleh/AFP

Rockets hit Iraq's Green Zone, U.S.-led coalition leaves base

Mar 26, 2020 - 5:55 PM

Other Iraqi bases and foreign embassies, particularly the American mission, have been targeted in more than two dozen rocket attacks since late October that have prompted fears of a proxy war on Iraqi soil

GREEN ZONE. Members of the Iraqi security forces look on as municipal workers clear cement blocks at the al-Sinek bridge, connecting the Iraqi capital Baghdad's Sinek district to the Salhiyeh district neighboring the high-security Green Zone, which hosts government offices and foreign embassies, in Baghdad on February 12, 2020. File photo by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP

Iraq faces financial calamity after crude crash

Mar 20, 2020 - 1:15 PM

With oil prices down, Iraq's net income is seen to drop 65% in 2020 compared to 2019

Rockets hit Iraq base hosting foreign troops – military

Mar 17, 2020 - 4:40 PM

The rockets slammed into the Besmaya base south of Baghdad late Monday night, a statement by the military says, making no mention of casualties

BESMAYA BASE. Iraqi soldiers train by foreign contractors in the Besmaya military base in southern Baghdad on April 24, 2012. File photo by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP

Coronavirus curfew shuts down cities in Iraq's Kurdish region

Mar 14, 2020 - 10:30 PM

Iraq's interior minister says 'moving around is banned and people must stay home'

LOCKDOWN. A security guard feeds pigeons in front of the Arbil citadel during the first day of lockdown in the capital of the northern Iraqi Kurdish autonomous region on March 14, 2020. Photo by Safin Hamed/AFP

New rockets target Iraq base where U.S., U.K. troops killed

Mar 14, 2020 - 4:53 PM

(UPDATED) This comes 3 days after a similar attack on the base, the deadliest such incident in years

U.S. retaliates in Iraq for deadly rocket attack

Mar 13, 2020 - 9:34 AM

The strikes were 'defensive, proportional, and in direct response to the threat posed by Iranian-backed Shia militia groups who continue to attack bases,' the Pentagon says

MOCK FLAG. A mock US flag is painted on the ground for cars to drive on in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on January 3, 2020. Photo by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP

U.S., UK troops among 3 dead in Iraq rocket attack

Mar 12, 2020 - 1:00 PM

The attack threatens a dangerous escalation, with suspected US-led coalition air strikes promptly targeting Iran-aligned Iraqi fighters in neighboring Syria

US TROOPS. A handout picture received from the US embassy in Iraq on December 31, 2019, shows American soldiers taking position around the embassy in the capital Baghdad. File photo by US Embassy in Iraq/AFP

Top Iraq cleric's sermon canceled over virus, a first since 2003

Mar 06, 2020 - 11:39 PM

Religious authorities have already closed the shrine of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Mohammed, where the sermon is usually delivered, to mitigate the risk of contagion

IMAM HUSSEIN SHRINE. This file photo taken on September 11, 2019 shows a view of the facade of the Bab al-Raja gate of the courtyard of the Imam Hussein shrine in the central Iraqi holy city of Karbala. File photo by Mohammed Sawaf/AFP

Iraq crisis deepens after PM-designate steps down

Mar 02, 2020 - 8:33 PM

Mohammed Allawi's departure plunges Iraq deeper into uncertainty and leaves President Barham Saleh 15 days to propose a new candidate

MOHAMMED ALLAWI. A handout picture released by Iraqi Prime Minister's Media Office shows Iraqi prime minister-designate Mohammed Tawfiq Allawi giving a televised speech in Baghdad on February 19, 2020. File photo by Iraqi Prime Minister's Press Office/AFP

'They're the virus': Iraq outbreak refuels anti-govt protests

Mar 02, 2020 - 10:32 AM

'Your snipers didn't deter us, what can coronavirus do?' protesters chant

FIRE AND FLAG. Masked anti-government protesters wave the national flag before flaming tires at a makeshift roadblock in Najaf on February 1, 2020. Photo by Haidar Hamdani/AFP

Virus strikes another blow at religious tourism in Iraq

Feb 27, 2020 - 6:00 PM

In 'normal' times, income from pilgrims creates jobs for Iraqis and brings in billions of dollars per year. But with the novel coronavirus, visitor numbers are plunging.

Pilgrims wearing masks walk through the courtyard of the shrine of Imam Ali on February 25, 2020 in the holy Iraqi central city of Najaf, where the first case of coronavirus COVID-19 has been documented in Iraq. - Iraq on February 24 confirmed its first novel coronavirus case in an elderly Iranian national in Najaf, according to health officials. A country with a dilapidated healthcare system, Iraq often hosts pilgrims and religious students from Iran, where at least a dozen people have died of the novel coronavirus since an outbreak there was first reported last week. Iraq had blocked travel to and from the Islamic republic days before announcing a seminary student in Najaf was the country's first confirmed case. (Photo by Haidar HAMDANI / AFP)

4 more Middle East nations report coronavirus cases

Feb 25, 2020 - 9:23 AM

Bahrain shuts 3 schools after a man who had transported children to the institutions tested positive after returning from Iran

CHECK. The body temperature of an Iraqi child returning from Iran is measured upon her arrival at the Najaf International Airport on February 21, 2020. Photo by Haidar Hamdani/AFP

Iraq confirms 1st novel coronavirus case

Feb 24, 2020 - 7:59 PM

Iraq, a country with a dilapidated healthcare system, often hosts pilgrims and religious students from Iran, where 12 people have died of the novel coronavirus

PROTECTION. People wearing protective masks wait at a bus station in the Iranian capital Tehran on February 24, 2020. Photo by Atta Kenare/AFP

Iraq protesters rally for one of their own to become PM

Feb 16, 2020 - 10:24 PM

Groups now support Alaa al-Rikaby, a pharmacist who has emerged as a prominent activist in the protest hotspot of Nasiriyah

Masked anti-government protester wave the national flag before flaming tyres at a make-shift roadblock in the central Iraqi holy shrine city of Najaf on February 1, 2020. Iraq's president named former communications minister Mohammad Allawi as the country's new prime minister after an 11th-hour consensus among political blocs, but the streets seemed divided on his nomination. Haidar HAMDANI / AFP

Rocket attack hits near U.S. embassy in Iraq capital

Feb 16, 2020 - 10:23 AM

The assault sends warning sirens blaring across the diplomatic compound but it is unclear exactly what was hit and how many rockets made impact

Iraq commemorates top commander killed in U.S. strike

Feb 11, 2020 - 7:10 PM

Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was the deputy head of the Hashed al-Shaabi, a loose network of paramilitary groups formed in 2014 to fight jihadists that has since been absorbed into the Iraqi state

TRIBUTE. Iraqi's national security adviser Faleh Fayyad (L), who also is a leader of the Popular Mobilisation Froce known as the Hashed al-Shaabi, addresses a memorial service held in Baghdad's high-security Green Zone on February 11, 2020 to mark 40 days since the killing of Iran's late top general Qasem Soleimani (portrait-Centre-L) and Iraqi paramilitary commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis (C-R) in a US drone strike near Baghdad airport last month. Photo by Sabah Arar/AFP

Over 100 U.S. troops suffered brain injury in Iran attack – Pentagon

Feb 11, 2020 - 10:39 AM

Trump had dismissed reported injuries as 'headaches' and 'not very serious'

SOLDIER. U.S. troops from the Army's 82nd Airborne Division get some rest at Green Ramp before they head out for a deployment to the Middle East on January 4, 2020 in Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Photo by Andrew Craft/Getty Images/AFP

[ANALYSIS] General Qasem Soleimani's asymmetrical legacy

Feb 06, 2020 - 12:56 PM

Even before his death, one of General Soleimani’s ultimate legacies – the activation of the Iranian Corridor – was able to carry out calibrated responses to achieve Tehran’s crucial foreign policy aims

Iraq protest camps splinter over cleric's backing of new PM

Feb 03, 2020 - 9:43 PM

Most young protesters have rejected premier-designate Mohammad Allawi as too close to the ruling elite and a product of consensus among much-reviled parties

PROTEST. Iraqi anti-government demonstrators step on a poster bearing the portrait of prime minister-designate Mohammad Allawi in Baghdad's Tahrir square on February 3, 2020. Photo by Sabah Arar/AFP

Iraqi protesters dig in heels despite new PM-designate

Feb 02, 2020 - 6:11 PM

Demonstrators demand a politically independent successor who had not served in government. For them, ex-communications minister Mohammad Allawi does not make the cut.

PROTESTS CONTINUE. Masked anti-government protesters wave the national flag before flaming tires at a makeshift roadblock in the central Iraqi holy shrine city of Najaf on February 1, 2020. Photo by Haidar Hamdani/AFP

3 rockets hit U.S. embassy in protest-hit Iraqi capital

Jan 27, 2020 - 8:01 AM

One rocket hit an embassy cafeteria at dinner time while two others landed nearby, a security source says

SMOKE. Iraqi protesters react amid tear gas amid clashes with security forces following an anti-government demonstration in Al-Khilani square in the capital Baghdad, on January 26, 2020. Photo by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP

Iraq protesters wounded in second day of clashes with security forces

Jan 26, 2020 - 5:05 PM

At least 17 protesters are wounded, including 6 with bullet wounds, says a police source

AFTERMATH. Iraqi anti-government demonstrators check burnt tents at a protest sit-in in Tahrir Square in the center of the Iraqi capital Baghdad on January 25, 2020. Photo by Sabah Arar/AFP

Thousands join anti-U.S. rally in Baghdad, rattling rival protesters

Jan 24, 2020 - 5:04 PM

The march rattles the separate, months-old protest movement that has gripped the capital and the Shiite-majority south since October, demanding a government overhaul, early elections, and more accountability

11 U.S. troops wounded in last week's Iran attack on Iraq base – Central Command

Jan 17, 2020 - 11:57 AM

The US military has previously maintained there were no casualties

An image grab from footage obtained from the state-run Iran Press news agency on January 8, 2020 allegedly shows rockets launched from the Islamic republic against the US military base in Ein-al Asad in Iraq. - Iran fired "more than a dozen" ballistic missiles, against two airbases in Iraq where US and coalition forces are based, the Pentagon said. "At approximately 5.30 pm (2230 GMT) on January 7, Iran launched more than a dozen ballistic missiles against US military and coalition forces in Iraq," Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement. (Photo by - / IRAN PRESS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT - AFP PHOTO / HO / IRAN PRESS NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS FROM ALTERNATIVE SOURCES, AFP IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DIGITAL ALTERATIONS TO THE PICTURE'S EDITORIAL CONTENT, DATE AND LOCATION WHICH CANNOT BE INDEPENDENTLY VERIFIED - NO RESALE - NO ACCESS ISRAEL MEDIA/PERSIAN LANGUAGE TV STATIONS/ OUTSIDE IRAN/ STRICTLY NI ACCESS BBC PERSIAN/ VOA PERSIAN/ MANOTO-1 TV/ IRAN INTERNATIONAL /

1st batch of Filipinos from Iraq to arrive in Manila on January 15

Jan 15, 2020 - 12:30 PM

The Department of Foreign Affairs says the 13 Filipinos are coming from Baghdad and Erbil

FLYING HOME. A first batch of Filipinos will be flying home on Wednesday, January 15, 2020, after evacuating from conflict-threatened Iraq. File photo by Ted Aljibe/AFP

Iraq's Sadr calls for anti-U.S. protests amid new rocket attack

Jan 15, 2020 - 4:05 AM

The Iraqi leader makes the call after Katyusha rockets target an Iraqi airbase north of Baghdad where American-led coalition forces are based

PEACEFUL PROTEST. Iraqi leader Moqtada Sadr calls for a "million-strong march" against United States troops in Iraq on January 14, 2020. File photo by Haidar Hamdani/AFP

1st batch of Filipinos from Iraq to be flown to Qatar Monday night

Jan 13, 2020 - 6:47 PM

The Department of National Defense says at least 12 Filipinos may return to the Philippines on January 14, though this will depend on the availability of flights

Iraq warns of economic 'collapse' if Trump blocks oil cash

Jan 13, 2020 - 1:57 PM

'We're an oil-producing country. Those accounts are in dollars. Cutting off access means totally turning off the tap,' an first Iraqi official says

US President Donald Trump speaks from the White House on January 8, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images/AFP)

Iran agrees de-escalation 'only solution' to solve crisis with U.S.

Jan 13, 2020 - 7:51 AM

Security was stepped up in Iran's capital after a vigil the previous night for those killed in the air disaster turned into an angry protest and police temporarily arrested the British ambassador for being there

ROCKETS. An image grab from footage obtained from the state-run Iran Press news agency on January 8, 2020 allegedly shows rockets launched from the Islamic republic against the US military base in Ein-al Asad in Iraq. (Photo by Iran press/AFP)

PH will no longer send military 'battalions' to accompany Iraq evacuees

Jan 13, 2020 - 7:00 AM

Officials in charge of the repatriation effort realize 'it may not be wise to send uniformed servicemen to the Middle East due to the sensitivities of the countries there'

NO TROOPS. The government stands down on a plan to send two military battalions to accompany Filipinos evacuating Iraq. Alfred Frias/Presidential photo

Hundreds mourn reporters shot dead after covering Iraq protests

Jan 11, 2020 - 9:19 PM

Mourners suspect the killing of the two reporters by armed men was an 'attempt to scare people' in Basra for protesting graft in the Iraqi government and the lack of jobs in the country

MOURNING REPORTERS. Iraqis gather around mock coffins as they take part in a rally on January 11, 2020, to mourn two reporters shot dead the previous evening in the country's southern city of Basra, where they had been covering months of anti-government protests. Photo by Hussein Faleh/AFP

1st batch of Filipinos from Iraq to be flown to Manila on Sunday

Jan 11, 2020 - 3:19 PM

Filipinos in and near Tripoli, Libya, must be mandatorily evacuated, too, says the defense department, as tensions escalate in the North African country

FLYING HOME. A first batch of Filipinos will be flying home on Sunday, January 12, 2020, after evacuating from conflict-threatened Iraq. File photo by Ted Aljibe/AFP

U.S. House votes to curb Trump war power on Iran

Jan 10, 2020 - 10:47 AM

'We cannot allow our country to be lied into another war,' says Democrat Ayanna Pressley

IRAN CRISIS. US President Donald Trump speaks from the White House on January 8, 2020 in Washington, DC, addressing the Iranian missile attacks (Win McNamee/Getty Images/AFP)

Iraq set for conflict, even if U.S. and Iran deescalate

Jan 09, 2020 - 1:52 PM

'Iraq will remain a zone of conflict,' says Randa Slim of the Washington based Middle East Institute

BATTLEGROUND? An Iraqi student waves the national flag during ongoing anti-government demonstrations in the southern city of Basra on January 8, 2020, shouting slogans against turning Iraq into a battleground for the conflict between Iran and the US. Photo by Hussein Faleh/AFP

The Middle East's Che Guevara? Killing elevates Soleimani as icon, martyr

Jan 09, 2020 - 9:48 AM

Inside a Beirut airport, black-clad women carry his portraits as they walk through the arrivals hall, chanting 'death to America'

Protesters hold pictures of Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani, during a demonstration outside the US consulate in Istanbul, on January 5, 2020, two days after top Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani was killed by a US drone strike. - A US drone strike killed top Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani at Baghdad's international airport on January 3, dramatically heightening regional tensions and prompting arch enemy Tehran to vow "revenge". (Photo by Yasin AKGUL / AFP)

Trump pulls back from war with Iran

Jan 09, 2020 - 7:48 AM

(UPDATED) 'The president has made clear that he does not have a coherent strategy to keep the American people safe,' House speaker Nancy Pelosi says

(FILES) In this file photo taken on October 11, 2019 US President Donald Trump speaks to the press at the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC. - President Donald Trump leaves Washington for a rally with supporters and a Thanksgiving break at his Florida home on November 26, 2019 but impeachment storm clouds threaten to spoil the party. Before boarding Air Force One, the president will act out the quirky annual ritual of pardoning two enormous turkeys, sparing them from the national day of feasting on Thursday. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP)

World leaders condemn Iran attack targeting U.S. troops

Jan 08, 2020 - 9:12 PM

(UPDATED) Western powers urge an end to the escalating confrontation between Tehran and Washington

WORLD REACTS. An image grab from footage obtained from the state-run Iran Press news agency on January 8, 2020, allegedly shows rockets launched from the Islamic republic against the US military base in Ein-al Asad in Iraq. AFP PHOTO/HO/IRAN PRESS

Airlines avoid Iran and Iraq airspace

Jan 08, 2020 - 7:14 PM

(UPDATED) Shortly after the missile attacks, the US Federal Aviation Administration says it is banning US-registered carriers from flying over Iraq, Iran, and the Gulf

Cimatu to fly to Middle East to start evacuating Filipinos from Iraq

Jan 08, 2020 - 6:50 PM

'We will do everything to bring out Filipinos there,' says the environment chief who's been appointed special envoy to oversee repatriations from the Middle East

SPECIAL ENVOY. Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu will be traveling to the Middle East to oversee the evacuation of Filipinos from conflict-threatened Iraq. File photo by Angie de Silva

Military to send ships, planes to evacuate Filipinos from Iraq 'ASAP'

Jan 08, 2020 - 3:40 PM

Army and Marine troops will be deployed to secure and assist Filipinos to be repatriated from Iraq, says Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte chats with Manila City Mayor Isko Moreno, Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Senator Bong Go and military and police officers during the closing ceremony of the National Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) Summit and the 1st Presidential Silent Drill Competition at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila on December 20, 2019. Malacañang photo

Iran and the U.S.: Months of escalating tensions

Jan 08, 2020 - 1:15 PM

Here's a timeline of the spiralling tension between the US and Iran

NOT WAR. Protesters demonstrate outside the White House on January 7, 2020 in Washington, DC. Photo by Alex Wroblewski/Getty Images/AFP

Iraq pro-Iran factions ramp up threats to U.S. after Iran missiles

Jan 08, 2020 - 10:04 AM

(3RD UPDATE) This comes hours after Tehran launches more than a dozen ballistic missiles at Iraqi bases where US troops are located

REVENGE. A handout picture provided by the office of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei shows him addressing a meeting in Teharn on January 8, 2020. Photo by HO/Iranian Supreme Leader's website/AFP

Philippines orders evacuation of Filipinos in Iraq

Jan 08, 2020 - 9:53 AM

(3rd UPDATE) The Department of Foreign Affairs says Alert Level 4 calling for mandatory evacuation has been raised in the country

Oil spikes, stocks plunge after Iran attacks

Jan 08, 2020 - 9:29 AM

'It's not going to be pretty today,' says one trader, reacting to the initial reports of Iran's first response to the US assassination of military commander Qasem Soleimani

A gasoline attendant fills up a car with gas at a gasoline station in Quezon City on Tuesday, April 16, 2019. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Iran fires missiles at U.S. troop bases in Iraq

Jan 08, 2020 - 8:24 AM

(4th UPDATE) 'We don't retreat in the face of America,' says Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

MISSILES. This still image from an Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting video shot on January 8, 2020, allegedly shows rockets launched from Iran againts the US military base in Ein-al Asad in Iraq. AFP PHOTO/Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting

NATO taking 'some personnel' out of Iraq

Jan 08, 2020 - 7:37 AM

US and allied foreign troops in Iraq are concerned they might be targeted by Iran or allied Iraqi militias in retaliation to Friday's killing of Qasem Soleimani

A picture taken on November 20, 2019 shows a NATO flag at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, during a NATO Foreign Affairs ministers' summit. - NATO Foreign Affairs ministers are meeting ahead of a NATO leaders' summit in London on December 3 and 4, 2019. (Photo by Kenzo TRIBOUILLARD / AFP)

Iran designates U.S. forces 'terrorists' for killing general

Jan 07, 2020 - 4:06 PM

The bill was an amended version of a law that declared the United States a 'state sponsor of terrorism' and its forces in the region 'terror groups'

RESTING SOLDIERS. U.S. troops from the Army's 82nd Airborne Division get some rest at Green Ramp before they head out for a deployment to the Middle East on January 4, 2020 in Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Photo by Andrew Craft/Getty Images/AFP

Soleimani killing offers chance for Iran rulers to rally popular support

Jan 07, 2020 - 8:55 AM

There has been a genuine outpouring of emotion and anti-American sentiment among Iranians

PROTEST. Iranians march on January 5, 2020 in the streets of the northwestern city of Ahvaz to pay homage to top general Qasem Soleimani, after he was killed in a US strike in Baghdad. Photo by Hossein Mersadi/Fars news/AFP

Letter on U.S. pullout from Iraq sent by 'mistake'

Jan 07, 2020 - 8:40 AM

The head of the US military's Task Force Iraq informed his Iraqi counterparts in a letter dated Sunday, January 5 that troops were preparing to leave

A mock US flag is painted on the ground for cars to drive on in the Iraqi capital Baghdad on January 3, 2020, following news of the killing of Iranian Revolutionary Guards top commander Qasem Soleimani in a US strike on his convoy at Baghdad international airport. (Photo by AHMAD AL-RUBAYE / AFP)