Baghdad governorate profile, August 2015
Baghdad governorate is the most populous in the country, home to 7,145,470 individuals (excluding IDPs and Syrian refugees). By August it held over 538,000 IDPs, the second largest concentration in Iraq. Over the past decade numerous waves of IDPs have come to this governorate, due to its strategic location and the political importance of the country’s capital: as an example, Baghdad accommodated over a third of the estimated 1.6 million IDPs displaced in the aftermath of the Samarra 2006 bombings.
Thawra 1 and 2, which constitute Sadr City, the poorest suburb of Baghdad, used to be a stronghold of religious militia that fought against USA-led multi-national forces during their intervention. Since start of the recent conflict in late 2013, IDPs have continued to flow to Baghdad, settling mainly in Karkh, Abu Ghraib and Mahmoudiya districts, situated near Ramadi and Falluja (the areas affected the most by the ongoing violence).
Fighting has intensified between armed groups and Iraqi Security Forces. Security remains unstable due to activities of various militias armed gangs and the spread of kidnappings for ransom. As a result, almost 60,000 individuals have been displaced from and within Baghdad; the number of IDPs to continue to grow.