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Jordan’s ‘highway through hell’

Amid security concerns, Iraqi authorities decided in mid-July to close the only border crossing with Jordan, leaving the once-busy trucking route between the two countries deserted.
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RUWAISHED, Jordan — Although talks are underway in the Iraqi capital to reopen the country's only crossing to Jordan, one fact remains. The once-thriving trucking route between the two countries has been reduced to an empty gray strip, indistinguishable from the black basalt rock and sand of the surrounding desert, long before the closure on July 16.

Authorities in Baghdad decided to shut operations last month, in the hope to interrupt the flow of revenues to the Islamic State (IS) from commercial trucks traveling across Iraq. Jordanian officials confirmed the closure shortly after. But sources inside Iraq see the move as a security measure, amid ongoing military operations across the restive Anbar province.

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