Along Iraq’s borders, a corrupt customs-evasion cartel is diverting billions of dollars away from state coffers to line the pockets of armed groups, political parties and crooked officials.
The prime beneficiaries are Iran-linked Shiite paramilitaries that intimidate federal officials who dare obstruct them, sometimes through chillingly specific death threats, a six-month AFP investigation has found.
Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, the highest religious authority for Iraq’s Shiite Muslims, has wielded subtle but unprecedented power for a cleric, guiding his followers through decades of dictatorship, occupation and conflict.
On January 21, 2021, I was hosted by DW English for a brief update from Baghdad on that day’s twin suicide attack on a commercial district in Baghdad, which were later claimed by the Islamic State group.
[Produced with my colleague Ammar Karim and published here December 31, 2020]
One year after US forces assassinated Iran’s most storied commander, tensions are boiling between Iraq’s Washington-backed premier and pro-Tehran forces that accuse him of complicity in the Baghdad drone strike.