Human Rights Watch

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Iraq: Water Crisis in Basra

Decades of Mismanagement, Pollution, Corruption

Monday 22 July 2019


Iraqi authorities have failed to ensure for almost 30 years that Basra residents have sufficient safe drinking water, resulting in on-going health concerns, Human Rights Watch said. The situation culminated in an acute water crisis that sent at least 118,000 people to hospital in 2018 and led to violent protests. The report, “Basra is Thirsty: Iraq’s Failure to Manage the Water Crisis,” found that the crisis is a result of complex factors that if left unaddressed will most likely result in future water-borne disease outbreaks and continued economic hardship. The authorities at the local and federal level have done little to address the underlying conditions causing the situation.

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