‘Everything Is Calm, and People Are Happy’
So says Iraq’s new electricity minister a year after blackouts sparked violent riots across the country.
Since the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, reliable power supplies—or the lack thereof—have played an outsize role in the country’s stability. During hot summer months, demand for electricity outstrips available supplies, leading to rationing and blackouts. Last summer, blackouts sparked violent protests in southern Iraq that soon spread across much of the country—and cost the old electricity minister his job. Foreign Policy spoke with the new minister, Luay al-Khatteeb, about fears of another burning summer, the country’s ambitious plans to rebuild the shattered power sector, and U.S. pressure over continued energy ties with Iran.
Keith Johnson is a deputy news editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @KFJ_FP
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