Threats to restrict access

Residents of Pshdar’s Sherwet express concerns over tourists leaving trash

PSHDAR — Residents of Sherwet village in Sulaymaniyah’s Pshdar area are complaining about tourists who leave behind trash, burdening the locals with cleanup.

Rasul Pirot, a member of the Sherwet village council, told 964media, “Tourists leave food waste and messes.” He added that the village youth often help clean up. “If this continues, we may have to restrict tourist access,” Pirot said.

The problem is not unique to Sherwet but affects other villages as well, leading some to restrict tourist access.

Soran Barza, manager of Bivan Company, which handles cleaning in the area, said, “We provide bins, but tourists often ignore them and leave the area dirty, affecting the environment.” Barza also mentioned a staff shortage and noted that tourist areas are cleaned every Saturday, but continuous oversight is difficult.

Sherwet, part of the Zharawa sub-district in Pshdar, is surrounded by three villages with about 350 households and is about five kilometers from the district center.

Rezan Khidr, head of Zharawa Municipality, acknowledged efforts to deliver services but cited budget constraints. “We haven’t been notified about tourists littering, but we will monitor the situation closely,” Khidr said.

On March 2, the Sulaymaniyah Municipality issued a warning about the consequences of littering in scenic areas and announced that violators would face penalties, although it did not specify the nature of the penalties.

Zardasht Rafiq, a spokesperson for the Sulaymaniyah Municipality, told 964media, “It takes minimal effort for individuals to dispose of their trash responsibly. However, leaving areas cluttered significantly burdens our cleaning staff and municipal authorities.” Rafiq emphasized that maintaining cleanliness is a shared responsibility crucial for preserving the attractiveness and sanitation of these areas.

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Environmental advocate in Pshdar replants uprooted gundelia