Lifestyle 

Fairouz Cafe brings Levantine nostalgia to southern Iraq

BASRA, Iraq (Reuters) – Mohammed Abdul Ameer’s nostalgia for better days and his roots in the Levant were what inspired him to open Basra’s first mixed-gender cafe since the rule of Saddam Hussein, and themed in honor of the Lebanese singer Fairouz. An Iraqi woman reads a book at a cafe called Fayruz Cafe after the famous female Lebanese singer Fayruz, in Basra, Iraq December 29, 2018. Picture taken December 29, 2018. REUTERS/Essam al-Sudani The southern Iraqi city, the home of Abdul Ameer’s father, has since Saddam was toppled in…

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UK announces Iraq explosive clearance funds

Image copyright UNMAS Image caption More than 40 explosives were found in this former playground in Mosul The UK is to give an extra £5m to help clear Islamic State (IS) explosives in Iraq, the government has announced. The Department for International Development (DfID) funding is in addition to the £24.9m the UK has contributed to demining projects in the country since 2015. The money will be given to the United Nations Mine Action Service. The UK is committed to spending 0.7% of gross national income on overseas aid –…

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Trump in Iraq: Recognition, fiction, friction

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionUS President Donald Trump: ‘We’re no longer the suckers, folks’ Donald Trump’s unannounced Christmas visit to US troops in Iraq succeeded as a morale-boosting exercise, judging from the standing ovation the president got. Equally, and perhaps predictably, the trip had its controversial moments. Recognition for troops Mr Trump’s travelled to al-Asad airbase, west of Baghdad, to thank armed forces personnel for what they had achieved in Iraq against Islamic State (IS), the Sunni Muslim militant group, during his tenure as commander-in-chief: “Two…

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Donald and Melania Trump visit US troops in Iraq

US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump have made a Christmas visit to US troops in Iraq, the White House has confirmed. They travelled there “late on Christmas night” to thank service personnel for “their service, their success, and their sacrifice and to wish them a Merry Christmas”, it said. This breaking news story is being updated and more details will be published shortly. Please refresh the page for the fullest version. You can receive Breaking News on a smartphone or tablet via the BBC News App. You…

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People’s Vote protest and other mass marches – from Iraq to tuition fees

Image copyright PA Image caption The march calling for a ‘people’s vote’ on Brexit on Saturday attracted approximately 700,000 protesters, according to organisers Hundreds of thousands of people turned out for a march through central London on Saturday calling for a referendum on the final Brexit deal. Those demonstrating hope that the scale of their protest will force politicians to listen to their demands. But how effective is mass protest? Here are some other significant demonstrations which have taken place in the UK in recent decades. People’s Vote march: In…

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Water shortages fuel ongoing protests in Basra, Iraq

Electricity and drinking water are in short supply in the Iraqi city of Basra. More than 20 protesters were killed earlier this month when anti-government demonstrations turned violent. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said last week that practical measures were underway to address the problem of potable water and the lack of services in Basra province. The BBC visited Basra to find out if demands for basic services have been met. Source link

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Technology 

Siemens nears multi-billion euro deal in Iraq: Handelsblatt

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – German engineering group Siemens (SIEGn.DE) is working on a deal worth up to 9 billion euros ($10.6 billion) to supply energy generation technology to Iraq, business daily Handelsblatt reported, citing government and industry sources. People pass Siemens flags ahead of the company’s annual shareholders meeting in Munich, Germany, January 31, 2018. REUTERS/Michael Dalder Siemens Chief Executive Joe Kaeser has traveled to Iraq to secure a memorandum of understanding with the country on Sunday, the paper said, adding the deal also involved power transmission technology. The Iraqi government…

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Lifestyle 

Baghdad book market turns the page on a new Iraq

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – When Maher Abu Hissam started his Baghdad bookshop two decades ago he was selling up to 40 books a day, such was the hunger for literature in the days of Saddam Hussein, even though the regime banned anything it did not like. Iraqi women shop for books at Mutanabi Street in Baghdad, June 22, 2018. Picture taken June 22, 2018. REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani Censorship was lifted when a U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam in 2003 but far from an upturn in sales these days Hissam sometimes sells just a…

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Iraq election: Fire hits Baghdad ballots ahead of recount

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionIt is not clear if voting papers have been destroyed A fire has hit Iraq’s biggest ballot paper storage depot ahead of a recount. Votes for the eastern district of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, were being held in the building. It is not clear if any were destroyed or what caused the fire. Last month’s legislative elections were won by an alliance headed by the populist Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr. Amid allegations fraud, the outgoing parliament ordered a recount of about 10…

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Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr bloc wins Iraq elections

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Moqtada Sadr cannot become prime minister himself An alliance headed by the former Shia militia chief Moqtada Sadr has won the parliamentary elections in Iraq. Final results released by the electoral commission give his Saeroun bloc 54 seats, with current Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in third place with 42. Mr Sadr, a long-term adversary of the United States, cannot become prime minister himself as he did not stand as a candidate. But he is expected to play a major role in forming the new government.…

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