Iraq’s Electricity Minister Majed Mahdi Hantoush resigned on Tuesday following pressure over repeated power outages across the country. Hantoush’s resignation coincided with a “complete shutdown” of the power system in the southern governorates of Basra, Dhi Qar, Maysan and Muthanna.
Electricity shortages have plagued Iraq for decades, but this summer is something new. Summer temperatures are averaging over 120 degrees Fahrenheit, coordinated attacks against Iraq’s transmission towers are increasing and Iran cut its power supply to Baghdad amid billions owed to Tehran. Coupled with the resignation of Hantoush, the electricity sector could face its worst summer in years.