RECONSIDERATION OF THE BOUNDARY OF THE SOUTHERN PART OF THE MESOPOTAMIA FOREDEEP OF IRAQ

Abstract

The tectonic setting of the southern part of Iraq is reconsidered on the light of the foreland concept. The nature of the regional gravity field, regional magnetic field and the Megaseismic Line 7 reflectors are inspected and integrated. The central gravity –magnetic high of Iraq (CGMHI), behaves tectonically, as a crustal flexing zone. The eastward continual tilting of post Gotniya (U. Jurassic) depositional basins resulted in gradual increase of time thickness (across Abu Jir Fault Zone) and begining at the flexural axis. The uniform continuity of the depositional cycles across Abu Jir Fault Zone denies the tectonic role of Abu Jir Fault Zone as a main boundary fault zone. During the Cretaceous and later history, the eastern part of Salman region behaves as a part of the Mesopotamia Foredeep. The study shows also that the boundary of the (CGMHI) with the Western Desert Gravity Low is associated with more profound fault zone. During the deposition of Chia Zairi and Kora China formations, slight syndepositional uplift at the western side of (CGMHI) could be detected. The (CGMHI) marks the crustal flexural zone; it is in congruence with the Foreland Basin Concept. The results of this study could help in a better comprehension of the tectonic framework of Iraq.