Iraq’s Crisis Cell extends curfew, announces additional measures to contain Covid-19
The Iraqi government Crisis Cell announced a series of additional measures to curb the spread of Covid-19. The measures include:
- Extending the curfew in Baghdad and all of Iraq until 11:00 pm on Saturday, 28 March. The curfew excludes pharmacies, medicine stores, food stores, bakeries and petrol stations. It also excludes medical, security and media personnel, and staff of internet service providers (ISPs), employees of the Central Bank of Iraq, state and private banks and e-payment companies
- Schools, universities, and colleges to remain closed until Saturday 28 March
- Flights to and from Iraq to remain suspended until Saturday 28 March
- The Municipality of Baghdad and municipal departments in the provinces are directed to suspend the collection of levies and other financial dues from residents to ease the financial burden caused by the coronavirus
- Relevant authorities are directed to suspended deductions for loans from the salaries of all state employees
- Requests the Ministry of Finance to transfer US$50 million to the Ministry of Health accounts to purchase medicines and medical supplies
- Declaring the period of the coronavirus crisis a force majeure for all projects and contracts effective from 20 February, 2020
The Crisis Cell also announced that it will submit a request to the Council of Representatives (Parliament) to grant Iraq’s Ministry of Health the power to spend funds in its efforts to combat the coronavirus and to exempt it from all relevant laws and regulations.
The Iraqi authorities earlier announced other measures, including banning entry into Iraq passengers arriving from France, Turkey, Spain, Nigeria, China, Iran, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Italy, Kuwait, and Bahrain.
The authorities also banned all travel between Iraqi provinces.
Crisis Cell underscores that the public must follow the advice of Iraq’s Ministry of Health and that of the World Health Organization.
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This article was published on 22 March 2020 and last updated on 25 March to reflect the current situation in Iraq.