70 Facts About Iraq


The official languages of Iraq are Arabic and Kurdish; others recognised in specific regions are Neo-Aramaic, Turkish and Armenian.

FactSnippet No. 461,772

Iraq was controlled by the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party from 1968 until 2003.

FactSnippet No. 461,773

Iraq is considered an emerging middle power with a strategic location and a founding member of the United Nations, the OPEC as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF.

FactSnippet No. 461,774

From 1920 to 2005 Iraq experienced spells of significant economic and military growth and briefer instability including wars.

FactSnippet No. 461,775

Between 65, 000 BC and 35, 000 BC, northern Iraq was home to a Neanderthal culture, archaeological remains of which have been discovered at Shanidar Cave This same region is the location of a number of pre-Neolithic cemeteries, dating from approximately 11, 000 BC.

FactSnippet No. 461,776

Between the 29th and 24th centuries BC, a number of kingdoms and city states within Iraq began to have Akkadian speaking dynasties; including Assyria, Ekallatum, Isin and Larsa.

FactSnippet No. 461,777

Sargon of Akkad, originally a Rabshakeh to a Sumerian king, founded the empire, he conquered all of the city states of southern and central Iraq, and subjugated the kings of Assyria, thus uniting the Sumerians and Akkadians in one state.

FactSnippet No. 461,778

Iraq then set about expanding his empire, conquering Gutium, Elam in modern-day Iran, and had victories that did not result into a full conquest against the Amorites and Eblaites of the Levant.

FactSnippet No. 461,779

Iraq's accomplishments include the completion of construction of the Great Ziggurat of Ur, begun by his father Ur-Nammu.

FactSnippet No. 461,780

Iraq eventually prevailed over the successor of Ishme-Dagan and subjected Assyria and its Anatolian colonies.

FactSnippet No. 461,781

Iraq was from this point divided into three polities: Assyria in the north, Kassite Babylonia in the south central region, and the Sealand Dynasty in the far south.

FactSnippet No. 461,782

Under rulers such as Adad-Nirari II, Ashurnasirpal, Shalmaneser III, Semiramis, Tiglath-pileser III, Sargon II, Sennacherib, Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal, Iraq became the centre of an empire stretching from Persia, Parthia and Elam in the east, to Cyprus and Antioch in the west, and from The Caucasus in the north to Egypt, Nubia and Arabia in the south.

FactSnippet No. 461,783

The population of Iraq, estimated at 30 million in 800 AD, was only 5 million at the start of the 20th century.

FactSnippet No. 461,784

In line with their "Sharifian Solution" policy, the British established the Hashemite king on 23 August 1921, Faisal I of Iraq, who had been forced out of Syria by the French, as their client ruler.

FactSnippet No. 461,785

Nuri Said served as the prime minister during the Kingdom of Iraq, and was a major political figure in Iraq under the monarchy.

FactSnippet No. 461,786

Iraq was overthrown by Colonel Abdul Salam Arif in a February 1963 coup.

FactSnippet No. 461,787

Iraq was ordered to destroy its chemical and biological weapons and the UN attempted to compel Saddam's government to disarm and agree to a ceasefire by imposing additional sanctions on the country in addition to the initial sanctions imposed following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.

FactSnippet No. 461,788

In May 2007, Iraq's Parliament called on the United States to set a timetable for withdrawal and US coalition partners such as the UK and Denmark began withdrawing their forces from the country.

FactSnippet No. 461,789

In 2008, fighting continued and Iraq's newly trained armed forces launched attacks against militants.

FactSnippet No. 461,790

In 2012 and 2013, levels of violence increased and armed groups inside Iraq were increasingly galvanised by the Syrian Civil War.

FactSnippet No. 461,791

However, despite the security crisis, Iraq's parliament did not allow Maliki to declare a state of emergency; many legislators boycotted the session because they opposed expanding the prime minister's powers.

FactSnippet No. 461,792

Since 2015, ISIL lost territory in Iraq, including Tikrit in March and April 2015, Baiji in October 2015, Sinjar in November 2015, Ramadi in December 2015, Fallujah in June 2016 and Mosul in July 2017.

FactSnippet No. 461,793

On 27 December 2019, the K-1 Air Base in Iraq was attacked by more than 30 rockets, killing a U S civilian contractor and injuring others.

FactSnippet No. 461,794

Since then, Iraq has been in a political near-deadlock at the highest level of constitutional and ratifying decisions as a new president is yet to be elected by parliament.

FactSnippet No. 461,795

Iraq has the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert.

FactSnippet No. 461,796

Iraq is home to seven terrestrial ecoregions: Zagros Mountains forest steppe, Middle East steppe, Mesopotamian Marshes, Eastern Mediterranean conifer-sclerophyllous-broadleaf forests, Arabian Desert, Mesopotamian shrub desert, and South Iran Nubo-Sindian desert and semi-desert.

FactSnippet No. 461,797

Climate change in Iraq is leading to increasing temperatures, often reduced precipitation, in such years increasing water scarcity for a human population that rose tenfold between 1890 and 2010 and continues to rise.

FactSnippet No. 461,798

Wildlife of Iraq includes its flora and fauna and their natural habitats.

FactSnippet No. 461,799

Iraq has multiple and diverse biomes which include the mountainous region in norther to the wet marshlands along the Euphrates and Tigris rives, while western part of the country comprises mainly desert and some semi-arid regions.

FactSnippet No. 461,800

Federal government of Iraq is defined under the current Constitution as a democratic, federal parliamentary republic.

FactSnippet No. 461,801

In 2008, according to the Failed States Index, Iraq was the world's eleventh most politically unstable country.

FactSnippet No. 461,802

Iraq announced on 14 August 2014 that he would stand aside so that Haider Al-Abadi, who had been nominated just days earlier by newly installed President Fuad Masum, could take over.

FactSnippet No. 461,803

All three major ethnic groups in Iraq voted along ethnic lines, as did Assyrian and Turcoman minorities.

FactSnippet No. 461,804

Iraq had no Sharia courts but civil courts used Sharia for issues of personal status including marriage and divorce.

FactSnippet No. 461,805

In 1995 Iraq introduced Sharia punishment for certain types of criminal offences.

FactSnippet No. 461,806

On 17 November 2008, the US and Iraq agreed to a Status of Forces Agreement, as part of the broader Strategic Framework Agreement.

FactSnippet No. 461,807

On 12 February 2009, Iraq officially became the 186th State Party to the Chemical Weapons Convention.

FactSnippet No. 461,808

Under the provisions of this treaty, Iraq is considered a party with declared stockpiles of chemical weapons.

FactSnippet No. 461,809

Iraq added that "the Speaker of Parliament did not clarify the number of voters, the number of those who said yes and the number of those who said no", and that "a law should have been issued and not a decision".

FactSnippet No. 461,810

Iraq is composed of nineteen governorates (Arabic: muhafadhat (singular muhafadhah); Kurdish: ??????? Parizgah).

FactSnippet No. 461,811

Iraq was an important tourist destination for many years but that changed dramatically during the war with Iran and after the 2003 invasion by US and allies.

FactSnippet No. 461,812

Iraq is considered to be a potential location for ecotourism.

FactSnippet No. 461,813

The tourism in Iraq includes making pilgrimages to holy Shia sites near Karbala and Najaf.

FactSnippet No. 461,814

Only about 2, 000 oil wells have been drilled in Iraq, compared with about 1 million wells in Texas alone.

FactSnippet No. 461,815

In 2013 Iraq's population reached 35 million amid a post-war population boom.

FactSnippet No. 461,816

Iraq has a community of 2, 500 Chechens, and some 20, 000 Armenians.

FactSnippet No. 461,817

Since the new Constitution of Iraq was approved in 2005, both Arabic and Kurdish are recognised as official languages of Iraq, while three other languages: Turkmen, Syriac and Armenian, are recognised as minority languages.

FactSnippet No. 461,818

Christianity in Iraq has its roots from the conception of the Church of the East in the 5th century AD, predating the existence of Islam in the region.

FactSnippet No. 461,819

Christians in Iraq are predominantly native Assyrians belonging to the Ancient Church of the East, Assyrian Church of the East, Chaldean Catholic Church, Syriac Catholic Church and Syriac Orthodox Church.

FactSnippet No. 461,820

The post-2003 Iraq War have displaced much of the remaining Christian community from their homeland as a result of ethnic and religious persecution at the hands of Islamic extremists.

FactSnippet No. 461,821

Iraq is home to two of the world's holiest places among Shi'as: Najaf and Karbala.

FactSnippet No. 461,822

Iraq had developed a centralised free health care system in the 1970s using a hospital based, capital-intensive model of curative care.

FactSnippet No. 461,823

Unlike other poorer countries, which focused on mass health care using primary care practitioners, Iraq developed a Westernised system of sophisticated hospitals with advanced medical procedures, provided by specialist physicians.

FactSnippet No. 461,824

In general, the education of Iraq has been improving since the MDGs were implemented.

FactSnippet No. 461,825

Early in the 2000s, the UNESCO International Bureau of Education found that the education system in Iraq had issues with standard-built school buildings, having enough teachers, implementing a standardized curricula, textbooks and technologies that are needed to help reach its educational goals.

FactSnippet No. 461,826

Iraq Centre has a faster enrollment growth rate than teacher growth.

FactSnippet No. 461,827

Iraq's culture has a deep heritage that extends back in time to ancient Mesopotamian culture.

FactSnippet No. 461,828

Iraq has one of the longest written traditions in the world including architecture, literature, music, dance, painting, weaving, pottery, calligraphy, stonemasonry and metalworking.

FactSnippet No. 461,829

Iraq is home diverse ethnic groups and has a very long and rich heritage and have contributed to the culture differently.

FactSnippet No. 461,830

Iraq is known for producing fine handicrafts, including rugs and carpets among many other things.

FactSnippet No. 461,831

Architecture of Iraq has a long history, encompassing several distinct cultures and spanning a period from the 10th millennium BC and features both Mesopotamian and Abbasid architecture.

FactSnippet No. 461,832

The National Theatre of Iraq was looted during the 2003 invasion, but efforts are underway to restore it.

FactSnippet No. 461,833

On 2021, it was announced that Iraq had reclaimed about 17, 000 looted artifacts, which was considered to be the biggest repatriation.

FactSnippet No. 461,834

Literature in Iraq is often referred to as "Mesopotamian literature" due to the flourishing of various civilisations as a result of the mixture of these cultures and has been called Mesopotamian or Babylonian literature in allusion to the geographical territory that such cultures occupied in the Middle East between the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

FactSnippet No. 461,835

Iraq has various medieval poets, most remarkably Hariri of Basra, Mutanabbi, Abu Nuwas, and Al-Jahiz.

FactSnippet No. 461,836

Iraq is known primarily for its rich maqam heritage which has been passed down orally by the masters of the maqam in an unbroken chain of transmission leading up to the present.

FactSnippet No. 461,837

In 1936, Iraq Radio was established with an ensemble made up entirely of Jews, with the exception of the percussion player.

FactSnippet No. 461,838

Iraq was home to the second television station in the Middle East, which began during the 1950s.

FactSnippet No. 461,839

Tablets found in ancient ruins in Iraq show recipes prepared in the temples during religious festivals – the first cookbooks in the world.

FactSnippet No. 461,840

Today the cuisine of Iraq reflects this rich inheritance as well as strong influences from the culinary traditions of neighbouring Turkey, Iran and the Greater Syria area.

FactSnippet No. 461,841