Mosul dam is in danger of collapsing

Iraqi Air Force dropped leaflets over the city of Mosul to offer instructions and emergency tips in case of the Mosul dam collapse.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – As an Italian company began repairing the Mosul dam, the Iraq government warned citizens about the possible collapse of the dam.

Iraqi Air Force dropped leaflets over the city of Mosul to offer instructions and emergency tips in case the dam crashes.

Bewar Khnsy, the economic security advisor to the Kurdistan Region Security Council in an exclusive interview with Kurdistan24 discussed three main problems that would lead to the collapse of the dam: weakness of the base of that dam that needs 24-hour workforce fill in holes [a processes called grouting] in the porous bedrock under the structure; the blockage of one of the gates since 2013, and the lack of assessments on the dam since its establishment in 1986.

According to Khansy, the dam might still be in danger of collapsing because the risk rises when the level of the water increases in the months of March, April, and May. “If the Italian company renovating the dam and the Iraqi team already working there are successful in keeping the dam safe between April 15 to May 15, the dam will be safe for this year,” he added.

In February, Italy’s Trevi Company won a deal worth $296 million to repair and maintain the Mosul dam. The contract between Iraqi government and the Italian company was signed in March. Following the signing of the contract, Italy decided to send eight military helicopters and 130 soldiers to protect the Italian company currently repairing the dam. The troops were deployed in early May, according to Italian Defense Ministry.

On May 10, The Italian Defense Minister, Roberta Pinotti, following a visit to Erbil, visited Italian soldiers. In a Tweet, Italy’s Defense Minister stated that his country deployed 450 troops to defend the 3.6 km-long (2.2 miles) dam, located near Islamic State-held Mosul in northern Iraq.

Mosul Dam, now under the protection of Peshmerga forces, is the largest dam in Iraq and the fourth largest dam in the Middle East, located on the Tigris River in the western Nineveh Province. The construction of the dam began in 1980 by a German and Italian consortium and was completed in July 1986.


Reporting by Baxtiyar Goran
Editing by Ava Homa