Weapons Destroyed to Support International Trade

Wirya Mustafa, MAG Iraq's Field Operations Manager in Dohuk, added: “Our team is still deploying to Kharabadar and surrounding areas, to completely remove and destroy all the conventional weapons."

The history of the contamination goes back to 1963 when the former Iraqi regime started evacuating the border villages. By 1974, residents had moved to Zakho city and other collective towns.

The area surrounding Kharabadar was categorised as restricted by the former Iraqi military, and villagers were prevented from accessing their land.

"Before the complex was set up, the land was generally used for farming and grazing animals,” local resident Dlovan told MAG. “But when the Iraqi military controlled this area they banned the villagers from going onto their land.”

After the uprising in 1991, things changed for the better. The trading complex was set up by the Kurdistan Regional Government close to the main highway that links Iraq and Turkey, and various companies started constructing offices, stores and trade markets.

MAG's Conventional Weapons Disposal teams are funded by the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement, US Department of State.

(Source: Mines Advisory Group)

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