Iraq: Abadi Pivots From Ramadi to Basra

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-‘Abadi managed to cap 2015 with a military achievement, the liberation of central Ramadi. But it is developments in the oil-rich southern province of Basra that will dictate his domestic political strength: the creation of the Basra Oil Company appears just a cosmetic change aimed at appeasing demands for greater local control.

The December military victory at Ramadi allowed the formal security services a moment in the sun and at least partially erased the black mark they received last May, when the Anbar provincial capital fell to militants of the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS). Mr ‘Abadi himself held a choreographed triumphal walk and flag-raising event in the city center on 29 December, the day after the area was cleared, to drive home the symbolism.


DON'T HAVE AN ACCOUNT?


NEED TO UPGRADE YOUR CURRENT SUBSCRIPTION?

By upgrading your Print or Digital subscription you will gain access to the MEES Archives Database with past articles and data dating back from 1984.

UPGRADE