Iraq Ezine

Iraq, officially known as the Republic of Iraq, is located in the Middle East, bordered by Turkey to the north, Iran to the east, Kuwait to the southeast, Saudi Arabia to the south, Jordan to the southwest, and Syria to the west. It is located at the crossroads of the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia, making it a historically significant region.



Iraq has a predominantly arid climate, characterized by hot summers and mild winters. The northern mountainous regions experience cooler temperatures, while the southern part of the country is desert-like, with very little rainfall.


Iraq’s wildlife is relatively limited due to its arid climate and extensive human habitation. However, the country is home to species such as foxes, hyenas, wolves, and various bird species. The marshes of southern Iraq support a diverse ecosystem, including aquatic birds, fish, and reptiles.

Longest Rivers:

The two main rivers that flow through Iraq are the Tigris and the Euphrates. These rivers have played a crucial role in the development of civilization in the region, providing water for agriculture and serving as transportation routes.

Highest Mountains:

The highest point in Iraq is Mount Halgurd, located in the Zagros Mountains in the northeast of the country. It reaches an elevation of approximately 3,607 meters (11,834 feet) above sea level.



Iraq is often referred to as the “cradle of civilization” due to its rich archaeological heritage. The region was home to some of the earliest known human civilizations, including the Sumerians, Akkadians, Babylonians, and Assyrians, who made significant contributions to art, literature, science, and mathematics.

Ancient Empires:

Iraq was part of several ancient empires, including the Akkadian Empire, the Babylonian Empire, and the Assyrian Empire. These civilizations left behind remarkable monuments and artifacts, such as the ziggurats of Ur and Babylon, the Code of Hammurabi, and the Assyrian reliefs at Nineveh.

Islamic Conquest:

In the 7th century CE, Islam spread to Iraq with the Arab conquests. Baghdad, founded in 762 CE by the Abbasid caliph Al-Mansur, became one of the most important centers of Islamic civilization, known for its libraries, mosques, and markets.

Modern Age:

Iraq became a British mandate following World War I and gained independence in 1932. The country experienced political instability, including coups and dictatorships, culminating in the rule of Saddam Hussein, who led Iraq into a series of conflicts, including the Iran-Iraq War and the Gulf War. In 2003, a U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein’s regime, leading to years of insurgency and sectarian violence.


Iraq has a population of over 40 million people, with Arabs forming the majority ethnic group. Kurds are the largest minority, concentrated mainly in the northern regions of the country. Other ethnic groups include Turkmen, Assyrians, and Yazidis. Arabic and Kurdish are the official languages, with Arabic being the most widely spoken.

Administrative Divisions

Iraq is divided into 19 governorates (muhafazat), each with its own governor and administrative structure. The governorates, along with their respective populations, are as follows:

  1. Baghdad Governorate – Population: 8 million
  2. Basra Governorate – Population: 3 million
  3. Nineveh Governorate – Population: 3 million
  4. Anbar Governorate – Population: 2 million
  5. Sulaymaniyah Governorate – Population: Approximately 2 million
  6. Erbil Governorate – Population: 2 million
  7. Dohuk Governorate – Population: 1.5 million
  8. Karbala Governorate – Population: 1.2 million
  9. Najaf Governorate – Population: 1.2 million
  10. Babil Governorate – Population: 1.7 million

10 Largest Cities by Population

Iraq’s largest cities by population include:

  1. Baghdad
  2. Basra
  3. Mosul
  4. Erbil
  5. Sulaymaniyah
  6. Kirkuk
  7. Najaf
  8. Karbala
  9. Nasiriyah
  10. Hilla

Education Systems

Education in Iraq is free and compulsory for children aged 6 to 15. The country has a system of primary, secondary, and tertiary education, with universities and colleges located throughout the country. Despite challenges such as funding shortages and infrastructure damage from conflicts, Iraq has made efforts to rebuild its education system.


Iraq has a transportation network that includes roads, railways, airports, and ports.

  • Airports: Iraq has several international airports, including Baghdad International Airport, Basra International Airport, and Erbil International Airport.
  • Railways: Iraq has a limited railway network, with the main line connecting Baghdad to Basra and other major cities.
  • Highways: The country has an extensive road network, with major highways connecting urban centers and neighboring countries.
  • Ports: Iraq’s major ports include Umm Qasr Port, located near Basra, which handles much of the country’s maritime trade.

Country Facts

  • Population: Over 40 million
  • Capital: Baghdad
  • Official Languages: Arabic, Kurdish
  • Religion: Islam (predominantly Shia and Sunni)
  • Currency: Iraqi Dinar (IQD)
  • ISO Country Code: IQ
  • International Calling Code: +964
  • Top-Level Domain: .iq