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Baghdad’s Young People Battle to Build Happier Future – Picture Essay

For a generation of young Iraqis who have grown up knowing only war, life is not easy. Across Baghdad, young adults and teenagers fight to realise their ambitions but many face challenges

Stefanie Glinski, Baghdad, Iraq | Friday 12 May

Iraq’s capital, Baghdad, is once again vibrant – its markets and streets colourful and busy, its coffee shops filled with crowds of young people and the lingering scent of fresh cardamom in the air.

It’s been 20 years since the start of the US-led invasion which toppled the then president Saddam Hussein – launched under the false premise of Iraq owning weapons of mass destruction. What followed were years of violence, including a sectarian civil war, frequent terrorist attacks by al-Qaida and, eventually, the emergence of Islamic State. About 300,000 civilians died in the conflict over the past 20 years and much of Iraq was left devastated.

Baghdad’s face is constantly changing: concrete blast walls coming down, new co-working spaces popping up, the banks of the Tigris River being redeveloped and a building boom under way. Young people have transformed grey walls into colourful murals, or empty buildings into restaurants and it is on this generation of people in their late teens and early 20s that so many hopes are being pinned.

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Baghdad’s Young People Battle to Build Happier Future – Picture Essay

Source: The Guardian



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