Mosul Dam at ‘higher risk’ of failure, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers assesses

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The lives of over a half million Iraqis are at risk if the Mosul Dam were to collapse and that risk has increased in the past year, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Iraqi soldier at Mosul Dam.
Iraqi soldier at Mosul Dam.

In an assessment made public by Iraq’s parliament on Feb. 8, the Corps of Engineers said it has identified “signs of distress” indicating the dam is at “significantly higher risk of failure” than previously thought.

The Corps of Engineers assessment is dated Jan. 30, just days before Iraq’s prime minister awarded an Italian firm a contract to overhaul and maintain the dam.

While Mosul Dam has suffered from structural flaws for decades, it was further destabilized when Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) seized control of the area in 2014.

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