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Travel Instructions to Iraq

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Iraq is located on the ancient territory of Mesopotamia. Mesopotamia is among the most ancient places within which the civilization originated in the world. Thus, Iraq has one of the richest histories in the world. The ancient Mesopotamia became Ottoman Empire in the modern era before being taken over by the British Colony in the 20th century.

In 1932, Iraq fought for its independence and withdrew itself from the hands of its colony to form an independent state of Iraq. After independence, the country was ruled by a monarchy system of governance which was later abandoned in 1958. This came after a military coup that led to the formation of the Republic of Iraq. In 1979, Saddam Hussein took over the leadership of Iraq as its president till his death on 30th December, 2006.

The country has been shocked by several wars including the Iraq-Iran war, the Gulf war and the Iraq-U.S war.

Geography

The current Iraq is a narrow stretched state that extends to the sea on a gulf. The state borders six countries, namely, Turkey, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Syria. It has an estimated geographical area of 169,235 square miles (Khaleej Times Online, 2010).

Health

Iraq has faced major turn of events in the last 30 years. The health care system of Iraq was the best in the in Middle East in 1978 and enjoyed a high GDP that made citizens to afford the health facilities. However, different wars deteriorated this status leaving Iraq to have one of the less established Health Care facilities in its region.

The health facilities in Iraq have poor infrastructure with the frequent water shortage and power failures. There is insecurity in both the public and within health facilities; thus, leading to increase the number of the patients taken to these deteriorated facility. The health personnel works under pressure and fear due to the low number of experts, poor facilities and insecurity by reducing the quality of the offered services.

Infectious diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis are rampart in the Southern and Central region of Iraq. The most affected are children and the elderly who have low immunity to fight the infections. Respiratory diseases have led to an increased rate of deaths among the children which is a sign of a dying nation.

Inadequate access to food deteriorates the health status of the Iraqis since the research shows that 75% of the population lacks adequate balanced diet while 60% depends on the government food. Only 48% of the population has access to clean water while the rest use untreated water thus leading to increase in the level of water borne diseases in the communities (Osborne, 1988).

Security

Iraq is an insecure state. While visiting the country, one might expect the sudden explosions from unattended grenades that might be lying accidentally from the previous wars.

Avoid crowded places due to the possibilities of suicide bombers who target government supporters and foreigners from countries that have had diplomatic rows with Iraq.

Kidnappings are rampart in the major cities of Iraq. Therefore, it is unadvisable to walk solely at night or in secluded places.

Transport

The transport system in Iraq consists of railways, waterways in the sea and airports. The railway is the most established form of transportation covering a total of two thousand kilometres (Khaleej Times, 2010).

Famous Attractions

Famous places to visit include the Hatra Ruins, the Babylon city, the great Ziggurat of Ur and the National Museum of Iraq.

Culture

Majority of Iraqis are Muslims, therefore, they expect Islamic dress codes, foods and religion gatherings on Friday.

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