At Least One Dead, Thousands Hospitalized Due To Dust Storms Across Iraq

At least one person died and over 5,000 others were hospitalized due breathing problems caused by a vast dust storm across Iraq on Thursday.

Iraq’s Health Ministry Spokesman, Seif al-Badr said that dust storms hit six out of 18 provinces, including Baghdad, the capital city and western region of Al-Anbar.

“Most of the patients were discharged after receiving medical treatment, but those patients suffering from (chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma), need more treatment,” Badr added.

Officials in Al-Anbar and Kirkuk provinces called on the people to not make unnecessary travel and try to spend more time at their homes.

Anas Qais, a health official in Al-Anbar province said they received over 700 patients with breathing difficulties.

According to AFP, the storms are expected to grow more intense with worsening climate change and has also caused economic damage.

“The storms caused damage to the buildings, vegetation and solar panels and also shattered airports and highways,” it added.

“Iraq could face 272 days of dust a year in coming decades due to climate change,” AFP reported, citing a government official.

© Fourth Estate® — All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.