Iraq Relaxes Coronavirus Restrictions

By John Lee.

Iraq's Higher Committee for Health and National Safety held a meeting on Tuesday under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi.

At the start of the meeting, the Prime Minister paid tribute to Iraq's medical and nursing professionals for being on the frontline during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In his briefing to the Committee, the Minister of Heath said that Iraq has increased its Covid-19 testing capabilities.

According to a statement from the Government of Iraq, the Director of the World Health Organization's Office in Iraq, Dr. Adham Rashad Ismail, praised the Iraqi government's efforts in response to the pandemic, and the measures taken by the Ministry of Health which contributed to a death-rate from of 2.9% which is lower than the global rate.

Following discussions, the Committee decided to:

  • Permit youth, sports activities and events in various fields (without the presence of spectators) while adhering to preventive health measures from 12/09/2020
  • Allow restaurants, event halls and tourist facilities at five-star hotels to reopen,  provided that health preventive measures are put in place as directed by the Ministry of Health
  • Allow all land border crossings to reopen to facilitate trade exchange only
  • Allow ministries and official public institutions to work at 50% capacity
  • Permit the Independent High Electoral Commission to open registration centres to allow voters to register for the biometric voting cards
  • Exempt staff of the Independent High Electoral Commission from curfew regulations

The Committee urged all Iraqis to continue to remain vigilant and to follow the official guidance of the Ministry of Health including adhering to preventive health and social distancing measures.

(Source: Govt of Iraq)

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