1041 GMT July 20, 2019
Haider al-Abadi’s office said on Monday that he had “decided to postpone his visit to China, which was scheduled for the 19th of this month, until further notice.” Press TV reported.
The decision was made “as a result of developments in the security situation” and due to “operations to liberate Anbar and operations in other sectors including Baiji,” the statement added.
Anbar Province and the Baiji area, which are respectively situated to the west and north of the capital, Baghdad, are witnessing stiff confrontations between Iraqi forces and militants belonging to the Takfiri terrorist group of Daesh.
The statement added that the premier had also delayed the trip so he can follow up on a reform package he launched last week.
Abadi rolled out the reform plan on August 9 in order to target corruption and curb reckless government spending in response to weeks of protests and a call for drastic change from the country’s top Shia cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.
The top religious figure had urged Abadi to adopt “serious measures” against corruption in the Arab country.
In the first concrete step of the drive, the premier’s office announced Sunday that he had scrapped a third of the cabinet posts.