Iraqi prime minister visits Basra, months after unrest

January 20, 2019 - 1:46 pm

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq's new prime minister, Adel Abdul-Mahdi, has visited Basra, a city that last summer saw riots over acute water pollution and crippling power outages.

Demonstrators at the time set fire to nearly every government building in the unrest, as anger over failing services reached a boiling point.

Abdul-Madi, who was confirmed in his post in October, has made it a priority to restore services to Iraq's second largest city and the country's main hub for oil.

But local officials say Basra is being neglected by the central government and they are demanding a larger share of federal revenues in Parliament.

Video published by the prime minister's office showed surprised residents kissing the premier and handing him business cards, on an unannounced walk through the Ghadir neighborhood, on Sunday.

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