"The congestion is unreasonable."

Traffic congestion grips Najaf amid Arbaeen pilgrimage

NAJAF, August 29 — With the Arbaeen pilgrimage underway, Najaf’s streets are experiencing severe traffic congestion due to the closure of roads leading to Karbala, however, traffic police say road closures are not related to government plans related to management of commemorations.

The road closures are not limited to the northern areas of the governorate, but also affect the city center, causing almost complete paralysis of traffic around the Thawrat Al-Ishreen bridges area, both towards Najaf Stadium and towards Kufa.

Local resident Ali Ahmed told 964: “The congestion is unreasonable, and the reason behind it is the road closures imposed by the Najaf traffic police, especially around the airport area. The roads have turned into long lines of cars.”

Yasir Al-Jumaili, Commissioner in the Najaf Traffic Department, said: “Some of the road closures in the center of Najaf and its northern areas are not related to the Arbaeen visit plan at all, as some people might believe.”

“Numerous road maintenance and repair operations are ongoing in various areas, leading to the closure of some roads or temporary diversions being set up,” he added. “The influx of visitors entering Najaf from various governorates, and even from outside Iraq, is substantial, which could also be an additional factor contributing to the traffic congestion.”