Iranian customs checkpoint on a border crossing with Iraq in Kermanshah province. (Twitter)

July 07, 2020

Iraq partially reopened its southern Shalamcheh border crossing with Iran on Tuesday after more than three months of closure to combat the spread of the new coronavirus, border officials said.

The crossing was being opened only for the trade of foodstuffs, allowing in some 500 trucks from Iran per week and would open every Wednesday and Sunday from now on, one of the officials said.

Iraq closed its international borders and provincial boundaries in March except for the delivery of essential goods such as food as it sought to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Iran, which shares a long border with Iraq, has been the epicenter of the virus in the Middle East but the spread has also accelerated in Iraq which is registering nearly 2,000 new cases every day. More than 2,500 people have died from COVID-19 in Iraq according to its health ministry.

Iran is one of Iraq’s biggest trading partners. Both countries’ economies are in crisis. Iran continues to suffer from US sanctions and Iraq is reeling from low prices of oil, which accounts for almost all its state revenue.

Reuters

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.