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The Iraq Anti-corruption commission has pointed out the illegal use of people’s funding from the state-run banks of Iraq.
According to the report from Al-Arabiya, Iraq’s anti-corruption group found nearly $700 million of embezzled public assets in a scandal involving more than 40 people. The Anti-corruption commission reported this after three years of scrutiny of the national financial institutions of the country.
According to the statement of the commission ensuring integrity, the country suffered a loss of 926 billion Iraqi dinars ($697 million) in terms of forgery, manipulation, theft, misappropriation, and money laundering. The abuse of position is also the reason for embezzlement of assets in the country.
The alleged fraud happened in Maysan province, the agricultural bank’s branch was misused in parallel with four other branches of the province including Rasheed Bank of Maysan and the Captial Baghdad as per commission.
No timeframe was mentioned by the commission of the fraudulent activity but one of the officials tipped the investigators to investigate the illicit activities that began in 2019. The commission suspect over 40 people can misuse the systems, the official said: “Arrest warrants will be issued against 41 people suspected”.
According to the commission, several people from different areas are involved in the scandal from bank officials to even clients/customers. The implications are imposed on multiple entities in the network as an attempt to destabilize the economy of the country or a “process of organized sabotage against the national economy” as stated by the official.
As per reports from last year, the official figures that went missing from the state treasury are well over 400 billion dollars nearly 20 years after Saddam Hussein was overthrown in 2003.
Iraq is ranked 157th out of 180 countries in the list of Transparency International’s corruption perceptions index. The state suffered severe losses as the falling prey to money laundering and financial scams in the banking sectors.
The major anti-regime protests were started in large part due to anger against the corruption and the misusing of national services and which is causing the state into dilapidation.