BAGHDAD, Feb. 10 (Xinhua) -- Prime Minister of Iraq Adel Abdul Mahdi on Sunday said that solving river water pollution issue is a priority for the new government, calling on exploiting rainfall water to increase reserves.
Abdul Mahdi's comments came during a meeting with a ministerial committee for water pollution control, attended by the Minister of Health and Environment Alaaeddin al-Alwan, during which Mahdi asserted the need to control pollution of water resources in the country.
"Solving water pollution issue resembles a priority to the new government since its formation,"a statement from Abdul Mahdi's media office quoted him as saying.
"We have taken correct and reassuring steps regarding the issue, in addition to implementing plans to limit water contamination and guaranteeing the optimal utilization of water resources," he added.
According to the statement, Abdul Mahdi called on developing a policy to rationalize water consumption and launching a media campaign aimed at preserving water wealth.
Last year, thousands of people were hospitalized due to water contamination in Iraq's oil-rich southern province of Basra, some 550 km south the Iraqi capital Baghdad, as poisonous undrinkable drinking water caused several illnesses and fueled raging protests in the province.