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Ex-Iraq minister jailed for 2 years for corruption

Iraqi construction workers shovel stones at a building site in Baghdad on 7 June 2011, [SABAH ARAR/AFP via Getty Images]
Iraqi construction workers shovel stones at a building site in Baghdad on 7 June 2011, [SABAH ARAR/AFP via Getty Images]

An Iraqi court yesterday sentenced the former Minister of Construction and Housing, and Municipalities and Public Works, Riad Al-Gharib, and another government official, to two years imprisonment on corruption charges related to wasting $25 million set up for construction projects in 2007, Anadolu reported.

The Supreme Judicial Council of Iraq said in a statement that the criminal court of Karkh, west of Baghdad, sentenced Al-Gharib and his colleague Hashem Abdel-Zahra, to two year in prison for "breaching the contracts of setting up (17) asphalt plants with a value of $25 million in 2007".

Al-Gharib served as the minister of construction and housing, and municipalities and public works between 2006-2008. He belongs to the State of Law Coalition led by former Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki.

The court ruling is preliminary and can be appealed before the Federal Court of Cassation within 30 days from the date of its issuance.

According to Transparency International, Iraq is among the most corrupt countries in the world.

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