Disruption of internet in Iraq caused loss of $1 million: trade chamber


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SULAIMANI — Iraqi trade has been damaged by $1 million USD in one day due to protests in southern cities and internet cuts in many provinces, the Baghdad Commerce Chamber has said.

The demonstrations in Basra have caused a decline in the volume of trade with Kuwait and Iran in the last several days, a member of Baghdad Commerce Chamber, Zyad Kaabi, said in a statement on Monday (July 17).

“They have caused a great loss to the trade and finance fields of Iraq,” he added.

The loss has been estimated at about $1 million USD in the last 24 hours due to the disruption of internet service, he noted.

The member of the Baghdad Commerce Chamber said the disruption of internet service has not reduced unrest in the country.

Demonstrations against shortage of jobs, electricity, water, and basic services erupted in Iraq’s southern cities last week, starting in Basra.

Internet was cut off in Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region, after the protests started. Officials said internet service was suspended due to a disruption in the main lines, while people have rejected the claim saying it was cut off due to fear of more protests.

The Shia heartland south has long been neglected despite its oil wealth, first by Sunni dictator Saddam Hussein and then Shia-led governments after him, including Abadi’s.