Iraq Vacation Trips
Iraq Demographics - Iraqi diaspora
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The dispersion of native Iraqis to other countries is known as the Iraqi diaspora. There have been many large-scale waves of emigration from Iraq, beginning early in the regime of Saddam Hussein and continuing through to 2007. The UN High Commission for Refugees has estimated that nearly two million Iraqis have fled the country in recent years, mostly to Syria and Jordan. Although some expatriates returned to Iraq after the 2003 invasion, the flow had virtually stopped by 2006.
In addition to the 2 million Iraqis who fled to neighboring countries, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre estimates the number of people currently displaced within the country at 1.9 million.
In 2007, the U.N. said that about 40% of Iraq's middle class is believed to have fled and that most are fleeing systematic persecution and have no desire to return. Refugees are mired in poverty as they are generally barred from working in their host countries.
In recent times the diaspora seems to be reversing with the increased security of the last few months, and the Iraqi government claims that so far 46,000 refugees have returned to their homes in October 2007 alone. More than half of Iraqi Christians have fled to neighboring countries since the start of the war, and few plan to return.
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