Karbala, Asharq Al-Awsat – The new Governor of Karbala demanded the return of the regions that were annexed by the Saddam Hussein regime from the Karbala province to the neighboring Al-Anbar province.
Amal Al Din Al Hir, the new Governor of Karbala who belongs to the State of Law Coalition that is headed by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki informed Asharq Al-Awsat that “amongst the Iraqi people, each [single] Iraqi belongs to all [Iraqi] cities, but there is a problem that we are suffering from which is the annexation of the Al-Nukhaib and Al Sahrawiyah areas to the Al-Anbar province but they were [historically] part of the Karbala province, and our demand is the return of these areas under [Iraqi] law and administrative customs. It is worth noting that these areas belonged to this province until 1974.
Al Hir added “We will make use of Article 40 of the constitution to solve this dispute, which is not a big issue, but is legal and so the decision makers will take action.”
Al Hir also informed Asharq Al-Awsat that “the [Karbala] province will experience an increase in quality at all levels due to the fact that Karbala is by its nature a city of tourism, agriculture and religion.
The new Karbala Governor went on to say that “there are many plans to serve the interests of visitors [to Karbala] and we believe that the number of visitors for the forthcoming Arba’een [an important Shiite religious event] will reach 20 million, double last year’s number.” Al-Hir added to Asharq Al-Awsat that “we have more than 1000 hotels in Karbala, although only a few are [of these] are up to international standards.”