Shop owners protest in Kirkuk after government orders evictions

Shop owners in Hawija bazar in Kirkuk speaking to NRT Digital Media on Tuesday January 21, 2020 (NRT Digital Media)

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SULAIMANI — Shop owners in Kirkuk’s Hawija bazaar protested on Tuesday (January 21) against the federal government’s decision to evict them from their shops in the marketplace.

One shop owner told NRT Digital Media that the government had given them notice last week that they would have to move out of their shops, otherwise they would be demolished. Protesters said that the officials issuing the eviction notices had said that decision had come from Baghdad, but did not give the reason behind the orders.

“We have even told the authorities we would pay a monthly fee to stay here because our livelihoods depend on it,” one shop owner said.

“The government decided to kick us out without providing any other place or an alternative solution,” he added.

NRT Digital Media reporter in Kirkuk Aso Ahmad said that there are more than 400 shops in the bazaar.

(NRT Digital Media)