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Iraq Replaces Grain Board Chief As Need For Imports Increases

Iraq’s Trade Ministry says the country’s grain board chief has been removed from his post and replaced by a man who was previously sacked from the position.

Trade Minister Milas Mohammed Abdul Kareem removed Grain Board Director General Hassan Ibrahim from the post over his alleged role in a spoiled rice shipment.

Ibrahim confirmed he no longer holds the position, but dismissed the ministry’s account of his removal as “completely wrong.”

Ibrahim has been replaced by Muthanna Jabbar, who held the position until 2009 when he was removed ina corruption scandal involving kickbacks in sugar deals and a damaged tea cargo.

Jabbar denies any wrongdoing.

Islamic State militants seized much of northern and western Iraq in June – including irrigated croplands along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers as well as flour mills and state-owned storage silos.

That could force Iraq’s government to increase grain imports drastically.

With reporting by Reuters