Erbil security foils third attempt to smuggle people into city in one week
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Erbil Traffic Directorate announced on Thursday that it stopped yet another attempt of human smuggling in the city despite a lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis, marking the third such attempt foiled this week.
Fazil Haji, a spokesperson for Erbil traffic police, said in a statement that security forces seized two vehicles on the Gwer-Erbil road full of people who were attempting to enter the city without medical inspection.
“In an initial investigation with the drivers, who were the smugglers, they claimed that the individuals were workers for a certain company,” Haji explained. “However, it was later revealed that they are people living in the surrounding areas of the Gwer district.”
Haji noted that the people who were being smuggled in the two vehicles were sent to receive medical examinations, adding that the drivers were handed over to the police and would be referred to the judiciary for legal procedures against them.
Haji warned that the Kurdistan Region’s security forces, police, civil defense, and traffic authorities are always present on all main roads and will inspect any suspicious-looking vehicles.
He called on all sides not to attempt to disrupt the security of the Kurdistan Region, warning that the most severe legal procedures would be taken against those who do.
On both Monday and Wednesday, the Erbil Traffic Directorate announced that it had foiled attempts to smuggle people into the city during a strict coronavirus lockdown that restricts such movement of the general population to block the spread of the contagious disease.
In efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has blocked travel and entry between cities in the Kurdistan Region and the rest of the cities in Iraq except for freight deliveries of food and other necessities.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany