HRH Sultan Ibn Salman

Official name: Republic of Iraq
Location: Iraq is located in Asia at the North-east of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Turkey in the North, Iran in the East, Kuwait in the South, Saudi Arabia and Jordan in the South-west, and Syria in the North-west. The Arabian Gulf lies in the South of the country.
Total Land Area: 437,370 km2

Land boundaries: 3,631 km
Capital: Baghdad
Official Language:
Population: 28,057,011 (2004)

Show Cities of Iraq
  • Baghdad

  • Islamic Monuments Of Baghdad

                Baghdad had played  an important political and intellectual role in the Islam world from the middle of the 8th century to the middle of 10th century. Today it is the capital of Iraq and is the most populated cities of the region.

    It was founded as the capital in 762 by the Abbasid caliph al-Mansur. The site and the date for starting the construction were determined by astrologers and geomancer while engineers, architects and land-surveyors from different cities had worked on the construction. Al-Mansur’s city was called as The Round City since it had a circular plan protected by three concentric walls. The city was accessed through four gates located on the four cardinal points: the Kufa Gate (SW), the Basra Gate (SE), the Khurasan Gate (NE) and the Damascus Gate (NW). Axes determined by these gates were surrounded by covered bazaars.

    Different districts had occupied the area between the second and the third wall. The residential area which was between the main wall and the palace area was divided into four equal quadrants by the vaulted arcades that connected the main gates to the palace area. The arcades were connected by ring streets from which opened the gates of the streets of the quarters.

    At the center of the city there was the palace (Dar al-Khilafa, the Palace of the Golden Gate) and the Great Mosque. There were also seven Diwans (Government Departments), residences for the younger sons of al-Mansur and a kitchen.

    By the time of Mansur’s death in 775, the city had reached to its limits. Suburbs had been built along the roads starting from the main four gates.

    All of these quarters and the Round City had canals bringing water from Euphrates and Tigris. This canalization system which was inherited from the Persians was remarkable with its layout and effectiveness.

    Between 775 and 785, during the reign of Mahdi, the son of Mansur, Rusafah (East Baghdad) had grown to rival West Baghdad with its several palaces and bazaars.

    In Harun al-Rashid’s time, between 786-809, the eastern quarters of the Rusafah, the Shammasiyah and the Mukharrim had become as great as the west Baghdad of Mansur. The Caliph lived in the Khuld Palace while the Diwans and the offices were still in the Round City. During this period the city is said to be the largest city in the world.

    The city had gone under the rule of many different groups: Buwayhids (945-1055), Seljuks (1055-1135), Mongols (1258), the Jalayirid (1400-11), the Qara Quyunlu (1411-69), the Aq Quyunlu (1469-1508) and the Safavid (1508-34). Baghdad was taken by the Ottomans in 1534 by Sultan Suleyman I and stayed under Ottoman rule until 1921, except a period of sixteen years of Safavid Persian control starting in 1622.

    During the World War I, Iraq was invaded by the British and a kingdom of Iraq was installed in 1921, selecting Baghdad as the capital. Damaged during the Iran-Iraq War in 1980s, the city’s infrastructure had suffered great damage in the Persian Gulf War in 1991. In 2003, Iraq was invaded by US forces which had caused severe damages in the city. The Coalition Provisional Authority established an 8 km square Green Zone at the center of the city which was the place of governing. In 2007 the US military started constructing a 5 km long 3.5m tall wall around the Sunni district of the city which was stopped by the Iraqi Prime Minister. Today the city is composed of two zones: the Shia city which is the part east of the Tigris with the exception of Adhamiya and Rashid districts and the Sunni city at the west of the Tigris with the exception of Kadhamiyya and southwestern districts. The Archeological Museum, the National Library and Archives had been looted during the invasion. The city’s cultural, architectural and archeological heritage is still under threat.



  • Kirkuk

  • Islamic Monuments Of Kirkuk
  • Kufa

  • Islamic Monuments Of Kufa
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    OIC-Research Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture (IRCICA)
    Alemdar Caddesi, No. 15, Bbl Girii Caalolu, 34110 Fatih Istanbul, Turkey 
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