France withdraws troops from Iraq over coronavirus

France is withdrawing its troops in Iraq. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 26 March 2020

France withdraws troops from Iraq over coronavirus

  • France has around 200 military personnel working in Iraq

PARIS: France will withdraw its contingent of troops from Iraq, mostly trainers to local armed forces, because of the coronavirus pandemic, the chief of staff said on Wednesday.
France has around 200 military personnel working in Iraq either as trainers or in the headquarters of coalition forces in Baghdad.
“In coordination with the Iraqi government, the coalition has decided to adjust its deployments in Iraq and provisionally suspend training activities,” it said in a statement.
The UK defense ministry had already announced some of its troops would come home, citing a “reduced requirement for training” Iraqi security forces.
Iraq’s military had halted all training in early March to minimize the risk of the illness spreading among its forces, including from the US-led coalition helping fight remnants of the Daesh group.


Bahrain to spend $570m on private sector salaries

Updated 28 min 49 sec ago

Bahrain to spend $570m on private sector salaries

  • Bahrain's government will spend $570 million on paying salaries to all 100,000 of its citizens employed in the private sector from April to June

DUBAI: Bahrain’s government will spend $570 million in salaries for 100,000 private sector workers from April to June to help with the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, the labor ministry said on Wednesday.
The government will also pay electricity and water bills for all Bahraini citizens and businesses and will extend some tax breaks on properties and tourism, it said in a statement.
The initiative is part of a $11 billion stimulus package announced by the government for the private sector to mitigate the impact on the economy from the outbreak.