Huge fire breaks out in Iraq's Ministry of Health

Country's public buildings have a long history of poor health and safety

Smoke was seen pouring from Iraq's Ministry of Health in Baghdad on Monday, as firefighters responded to a blaze which appeared to be on the lower floors.

There were no initial reports of casualties and the health ministry said the fire was under control by early afternoon.

Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi suspended Minister of Health Hassan Al Tamimi in April after a catastrophic fire at Baghdad's Ibn Khatib hospital killed almost 100 people.

Iraq's Ministry of Health is said to be under the de facto control of radical cleric Moqtada Al Sadr. Following the Ibn Khatib fire, the Governor of Baghdad and the director of the health authority in Rusafa, where Ibn Khatib hospital is located, were removed from their posts. The health minister later resigned.

Updated: July 12th 2021, 1:04 PM