Iraq. About 20,000 civilians were killed in violence during the first nine months of the year, but as of July, the number of deaths dropped significantly, especially in Baghdad and the province of Anbar in western Iraq. The background was that the United States strengthened its forces there by 30,000 in January soldiers at the same time as the number of Iraqi troops also increased by about 20,000. Many of the newly arrived soldiers were stationed on new small military garrisons scattered throughout the capital. In the countryside, village or neighborhood guards were paid to invite resistance to Sunni Jihadists. In Anbar, the security situation was so good that US President George W. Bush on September 3 was able to make a lightning visit there. Shiite Muslim extremists in the so-called Mahdi army also stepped down in the violence in and south of Baghdad since the group leader Muqtada al-Sadr had ordered a ceasefire in August.
In other parts of the country, there was still concern. From Basra in the south, which used to be a multicultural center of commerce, Christians and Sunni Muslims fled while Shiite militia groups fought each other in the battle for the area’s oil deposits. The British soldiers who were stationed there were engaged during the spring or entrenched themselves near the airport. Northern Iraq suffered several devastating explosions. The worst happened on August 14, when 400 confessors of the Jesuit faith were killed in two villages near the city of Sinjal in the northwestern part of the country. In October and November, the situation was tense in the three Kurdish-controlled provinces in the far north due to threats from Turkey about an invasion.
According to CountryAAH, Baghdad is the capital city of Iraq. The coalition government under the moderate Shi’ite Nouri al-Maliki was severely crowded from two directions. Shia Muslim ministers loyal to al-Sadr boycotted government work for a period, in protest of al-Maliki’s support for the US presence in the country, and al-Sadrlojala MPs also boycotted the work in parliament. The same did the Sunni Muslim members of the National Unity Front, but for them the reason was instead al-Maliki’s close relations with Iran. During the late summer and autumn al-Maliki managed to stabilize the situation and regain the support of its former partners in Parliament.
Former President Saddam Hussein’s half-brother Barzan Ibrahim al-Tikriti and former Judge Awad Hamad al-Bandar, who, along with Saddam in 2006, were sentenced to death by the War Criminal Tribunal in Baghdad, were hanged on January 15. Former Vice President Taha Yasin Ramadan was sentenced to death on February 12 for a massacre of Shiite Muslims in 1982 and hanged on March 20. In another case, concerning the so-called al-Anfal campaign against the country’s Kurds in 1988, General Ali Hasan al-Majid, “Chemical Ali”, was sentenced to death. Two co-defendants, former Defense Minister Sultan Hashim al-Tai and former head of Republican Guard Hussein Rashid al-Tikriti, received the same punishment. The three were also charged with abuses against Shia Muslims in 1991.
By the end of the year, over 4 million Iraqis were estimated to be fleeing their homes, almost 3 million of them in the country and most others in Syria and Jordan. UNHCR described the refugee crisis as the worst in the region since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. Many of I’s neighboring countries, such as Kuwait, had closed the borders for refugees and Syria in September introduced visa requirements for Iraqis. Most of I’s provincial governors also introduced barriers to internal refugees. According to a report by the World Health Organization in April, at least 70 percent of Iraqis lacked access to toilet and 70 percent lacked access to clean water. Despite the difficulties, 4 million children were vaccinated against polio and 3 million against measles during the year.
On 29 June, the UN Security Council decided to terminate the UN-Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission) weapons mission in Iraq. This since the country had signed several agreements on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. The Council also decided to suspend the IAEA Atomic Energy Agency’s control of Iraq.
Iraq won the Asian Football Championship on July 29 by defeating Saudi Arabia by 1-0 in the final.
Iraq – Baghdad
Baʹgdad, Baghdād, capital of Iraq; 8. 8 million residents (2015). Baghdad is located on a treeless, sun-drenched plain (67 m above sea level) in the Euphrates and Tigris valleys. The river Tigris flows right through the city.
The name is probably of Persian origin and means ‘goddess’.
Baghdad has three universities and a number of colleges. Most important is Baghdad State University (founded in 1958), the country’s largest educational institution with over 10,000 students. There are numerous historical and natural history museums.
Baghdad is Iraq’s industrial, financial and intellectual center and a hub for railways and other communications. In addition to the oil industry, about 70% of the country’s industry is located in Baghdad. textile, food and construction industries as well as small industries and crafts. A large move in from the countryside has led to rapid population growth and increasing decline.
During the Kuwait War and the US-led invasion of 2003, Baghdad suffered extensive bombings resulting in severe damage to industries and infrastructure.
Architecture and cityscape
Baghdad was founded in 762 by the Caliph al-Mansur and was built as a completely round, fortified city, 2,000 m in diameter. The city was named Madinat as-Salam, the city of peace or peace, with symbolic, cosmic significance as the navel of the world. In the center of the city was the caliph’s palace with a green dome roof crowned by a gilded rider figure. Next to the palace was the great mosque. Through the city, two intersecting main streets opened into four gates in the heavily fortified city wall. Soon the settlement began to grow towards Tigris. From the reign of the Caliph Harun ar-Rashid (786-809), palaces and mosques were also built on the eastern shore of the river. Three bridges connected the two parts of the city with each other. The Seljuks conquered Baghdad in 1055.
The medieval Baghdad was destroyed in 1258 by the Mongols. The remains of the medieval buildings are today buried under the modern city, and only a few buildings from the Middle Ages and later centuries remain. Archaeological excavations have not been possible. Preserved include Mustansiriyya madrasan from 1233, formerly theological school, now a cultural building after a restoration carried out in the 1990s, and Khan al-Mirjan from 1359 with unique plan and vaulting system on two floors against a long, 14 m high central hall. The famous Talisman gate with relief sculptures from the Seljuq era (1221) was destroyed in 1918. The brick architecture from the 1500s to the 1600s shows a strong Iranian influence, as in the al-Kazimiyya mosque and the Imam tombs, now in a suburb of Baghdad. Baghdad’s modern cityscape is characterized by Western influence and technology.
Baghdad quickly became one of the foremost cultural and commercial centers of its time and had its heyday during the 800-1000s. Its population then (certainly exaggerated) is estimated at one million. It consisted of a large number of ethnic and religious groups, between which contradictions often arose, reinforced by political and economic crises. In 1258, Baghdad was conquered and destroyed by the Mongols, but then rebuilt and served as the capital of various dynasties. During the 16th and 16th centuries, Persians and Ottomans fought for the city, but in 1638 it was conquered by the latter and remained in Ottoman possession until the First World War. In 1917, the British entered the city, which became the capital of the Kingdom in 1920, from the 1958 Republic of Iraq.