Iraq closes border crossing with Jordan until further notice
Iraq has closed its sole border crossing with Jordan after reports emerged that the ISIL Takfiri terrorist group levies taxes on goods crossing areas under its control.
A spokesman for Iraq’s Joint Operations Command said Thursday that the Trebil crossing will remain closed until further notice.
Brigadier General Saad Maan said the move is partly aimed at depriving ISIL of the income it makes through taxing the cargo trucks driving through its territory inside Iraq.
Maan said the crossing will be reopened after the security situation improves in the area.
Officials in Jordan also confirmed the closure with state news agency Petra, saying that government has urged drivers not to head to the Iraqi border.
The move could further affect Jordan’s fragile economic situation which has suffered in the wake of ISIL’s land grabs in neighboring Iraq and Syria since last summer.
The border crossing had seen heavy disruption in traffic over the past days. Jordan’s Ministry of Industry and Trade announced Tuesday that the Iraqi consulate in Amman no longer approves export bills destined for Iraq via Trebil.
Jordanian officials said the move meant a halt to trade between Amman and Baghdad as exporters had no other way around for sending their goods to Iraq.
Jordan had earlier closed its sole trade crossing with Syria after the terrorists group captured areas close to the border between the two countries.
Over the past months, ISIL has managed to extend areas under its control in Iraq as far as Ramadi, the capital of the Anbar province. Iraqi military and volunteer forces have been engaged in a massive operation to push back the militants from Anbar while a plan is also on agenda to attack ISIL in Mosul, north of the country.