Power triangle: Iraq points finger at Iran for supplying electricity to Syria

Published July 3rd, 2012 - 02:21 GMT
Power pylons in Iraq. Image source: Iraq Businessnews
Power pylons in Iraq. Image source: Iraq Businessnews

Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity denied on Monday that power provided to Syria was from its northern province of Mosul, adding that it was instead from Iran. 

“The 40 megawatt that was given to Syria was not from the province’s [Mosul] share, but from Iran,” an official spokesman of the ministry, Musab al-Mudaris told al-Sumaria TV.

Mudaris explained details of an agreement between the Iraq’s and Iran’s ministries of electricity in which Tehran is to give Iraq 1200 megawatt in electricity, and 40 megawatt to Syria.

“The power provided to Syria will not go to its cities, but towards agricultural lands close to the Iraqi borders … Iraq is merely a corridor to transfer power from Iran to Syria,” he said. “Mosul province produces additional power reaching up to 650 megawatt daily and this is enough for 12 hours daily.”

In the nine years since the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein, successive Iraqi governments have failed to address chronic power disruptions in a country where temperatures can top 50 degrees Celsius in the summer.

Power outages are a major complaint among Iraqis, many of whom face power cuts for up to 20 hours a day during periods of peak demand.

On Saturday, Mosul’s mayor rejected an order from the country’s electricity ministry asking it to give Syria 40 megawatts from its shares.

Mayor Atheel al-Nujaifi described Mosul’s constituents as opponents to the Syrian regime of President Bashar al-Assad who were against the brutalities being meted out to Syrians. 

Baghdad has expressed fears about Islamists and extremists posing a threat to Syria and the region should they come to power in a post-Assad scenario. 

Some Iraqis have protested against President Assad since the uprising began nearly 16 months ago.

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