Iraq to close airspace, borders for election day

A man walks past electoral campaign posters in Baghdad on May 8, 2018.
A man walks past electoral campaign posters in Baghdad on May 8, 2018.PHOTO: AFP

BAGHDAD (AFP) - Iraqi authorities said Wednesday (May 9) they will close the country's borders and airspace for 24 hours over an upcoming parliamentary election as they seek to impose a security lockdown.

The measures running throughout Saturday are similar to ones applied during previous nationwide polls in the conflict-wracked nation.

Some 24.5 million Iraqi voters are registered to cast their ballots in the fourth parliamentary vote since the 2003 toppling of dictator Saddam Hussein.

The poll comes just five months after Iraq declared victory over the Islamic State group, following a brutal campaign to push the jihadists out of the country.

ISIS has threatened to target the elections but the run-up to the vote has seen a lull in violence across Iraq.