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Iraq Mulls Rail Linkup With Iran

Iraq Mulls Rail Linkup With IranIraq Mulls Rail Linkup With Iran

Iraq plans to link its railroad network with that of neighboring Iran, the state-run Iraqi Republic Railways announced on Tuesday, noting that several international companies had already voiced interest in investing in the scheme.

IRR Information Director Abdul Sattar Mohsen also told Anadolu Agency that Iraqi and Iranian officials have already held several meetings to discuss the project. According to Mohsen, IRR is still looking for potential investors with a view to building a railroad extension linking Iran’s Al-Shalamcheh border terminal to Iraq’s southeastern city of Basra. “The planned 32-kilometer extension will allow passengers to easily pass between the two countries, especially during Shia pilgrimage seasons,” he said.

“The rail extension will in turn be linked to an internal rail line in Iraq to include the cities of Basra, Baghdad, Yusufiya, Musayyib and Karbala.”

A number of international companies have already voiced interest in investing in the project that, the official asserted, “falls within the context of plans to establish railroad links between Iraq and neighboring countries”. Established in the early 20th century, IRR has deteriorated considerably in recent decades due to an economic blockade in the 1990s and the US-led invasion of the country in 2003.

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