Blog archive: Iraq

  • 29th September 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Two Iraqi politicians have been awarded bogus degrees by a self-proclaimed university in Denmark, it has emerged. ● Former interior minister Qasim al-Araji received a worthless MA certificate from the unrecognised Aalborg Academy of Science in February 2019. ● Ahmad al-Ubaidi,...
  • 16th September 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The Aalborg Academy of Science is not a university, though it pretends to be one. It is the latest in a series of privately-run institutions found to be operating in Europe without proper accreditation and issuing worthless degree certificates to people in the Middle East. Two were uncovered...
  • 30th June 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Iraq's run-down healthcare system is contributing to the spread of coronavirus rather than helping to contain it, according to a report issued last week: ● Medical staff are kept working when they should be in isolation; ● Hospitals are kept open when they should be closed to...
  • 6th June 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Iraq reported 1,006 new Covid-19 cases on Friday – by far the highest number since the epidemic began. Throughout March and April Iraq's official figures showed the virus spreading surprisingly slowly and it wasn't until mid-May that the daily count of new cases rose above 100. Towards...
  • 16th April 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A couple of weeks ago Reuters news agency reported that Iraq probably has several thousand more Covid-19 cases than the official figures show. Its report quoted three doctors closely involved in the testing process, a health ministry official and a senior political official – all speaking...
  • 28th April 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A dispute is raging in Iraq over the future of children born to Yazidi women who were abducted and raped by Islamic State fighters. The Yazidis are a non-Muslim minority centred mainly around Sinjar in northern Iraq who follow their own distinctive religion. To maintain what they see as the...
  • 27th April 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The Yazidis are followers of one of the Middle East's minority religions, centred mainly around Sinjar in northern Iraq. They tend to be secretive about their beliefs and keep themselves to themselves: they don't accept converts and they don't marry non-Yazidis. Over the centuries they have often...
  • 17th August 2018
    By
    Mustafa Habib
    Fifteen years after US-led invasion, Iraq continues to face a multitude of problems. Iraqi citizens are tired of it and, increasingly, they are blaming the country's politicians. Demands are growing for political reform and a serious effort to tackle corruption.  In an article ...
  • 5th September 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A public relations firm which became notorious for assisting dodgy regimes – including several in the Middle East – has finally got its comeuppance. London-based Bell Pottinger has been expelled from the PRCA (the trade body for "respectable" PR firms) for bringing the industry into...
  • 31st August 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Writing about conflicts in the Middle East for the New York Times yesterday, columnist Thomas Friedman talked of "the power that is lost to a society like Syria or Iraq that needs an iron fist to make its many into one, and when that fist is removed, how the society fractures into small shards"....
  • 25th August 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Iraq's education ministry has quietly dropped a chapter about evolution from its biology textbooks. The ministry has so far given no explanation but the change has brought complaints and ridicule from Iraqis on social media. Among the complainers, Dr Mohammed Fawzi, who studied genetic...
  • 6th August 2017
    By
    Mustafa Habib
    Over the past few weeks, there has been a rash of attacks on medical professionals in Baghdad. It has caused protests, debate, bad memories and more than a few doctors to consider leaving the country. The article below is re-posted from the Niqash website. by Mustafa Habib Last...

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