Scores killed in week of flash floods in Iraq

Health ministry says most of victims died of electrocution in rain-related incidents in several parts of country.

At least 58 people have died in flash floods over the last week across Iraq, the country’s health ministry has said.

Most of the victims were killed by electrocution caused by rain-related incidents in several parts of the country, including the capital Baghdad, according to a ministry statement issued on Friday.

Rainstorms have heavily damaged private and public buildings and fuelled floods that disrupted public services and the lives of many residents.

People in several parts of Iraq were trapped in their homes after floodwaters mixed with sewage swamped the streets as the country’s outdated drainage systems failed to cope with the downpour.

”The rain is still flooding our homes and streets. We want a solution for our problem swiftly. Our children have become ill due to such hard circumstances,” Um Hussein, a Baghdad resident, told Al Jazeera.

Related: UN launches campaign to tackle cholera outbreak

On Friday, UNICEF’s Iraq Director Peter Hawkins told Al Jazeera said that a cholera outbreak, which spreads through unsanitary conditions, has been exacerbated by the floods.

The country’s escalated plight, compounded by a devastating conflict with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant group, has prompted further public frustration and protests over the government’s alleged failure to fix the country’s crumbling infrastructure and economy.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abbadi had responded to public pressure by announcing reforms to deal with rampant corruption and mismanagement, but they have been blocked by parliament because he declared the reforms without seeking approval from legislators first.

Source : Al Jazeera, News Agencies


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