ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Heavy overnight rainfall in the northern Iraqi province of Nineveh disrupted daily activity on Sunday as floods tore through parts of the area’s already dilapidated infrastructure.
Video footage and pictures published by social media users showed traffic jams in Mosul’s roads, many of which were put out of service by floods, along with bridges submerged in water.
One bridge partially collapsed, only a few days after it was inaugurated.
The Nineveh Provincial Council declared Sunday an official public holiday, with municipal offices and health, water, sewage, civil defense, and disaster prevention service departments being deployed for emergency care and to mitigate damages caused by the rain.
Many areas in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region witnessed torrential rains over the weekend, a day after authorities said the winter season had relieved the country’s drought fears.
In the Kurdish Duhok Province, Saturday’s rainfall led to massive floods that submerged multiple bridges and passing vehicles. So far, only material damages have been reported.
Post-rain floods are a perennial issue in the country as a whole, caused in large part by chronically inadequate infrastructure, including inefficient or poorly-maintained urban rainwater management and sewage systems.
Nineveh is Iraq’s second-largest province in terms of population and in desperate need of funds to rebuild the area in general and especially the ancient city of Mosul.
The city was brought to the brink of annihilation by the Islamic State invasion in 2014 and the subsequent campaign by Iraqi forces and Hashd al-Shaabi militias to expel the terrorist group from the city two years later.
Editing by Nadia Riva