Family makes private deal to run Iraqi air transport
Report claims 75% of industry sold without Coalition Provisional Authority approval
By Julian Moxon and Adrian Gatton
The bulk of Iraq’s air transport industry, including Iraqi Airways, has been sold off in a private deal without approval from the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), says a new report from the Open Society Institute (OSI), a watchdog organisation funded by financier George Soros.
Officially, the US-brokered CPA, which is running the country until the planned elections in July, is working to re-establish Iraqi Airways as a going concern. However, according to the OSI’s Iraq Revenue Watch project, 75% of the industry has already been sold to the powerful Khawwam al Abdul Abbas family. The report, entitled “Controlling Iraq’s Skies”, says the family, which reportedly had close ties with the former regime of Saddam Hussein, is establishing a new airline called al Iraqiyya Air …