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Iraq Geography

Iraq    Geography Top of Page
Location: Middle East, bordering the Persian Gulf, between Iran and Kuwait
Geographic coordinates: 33 00 N, 44 00 E
Map references: Middle East
Area: total:  437,072 sq km

land:  432,162 sq km

water:  4,910 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly more than twice the size of Idaho
Land boundaries: total:  3,631 km

border countries:  Iran 1,458 km, Jordan 181 km, Kuwait 242 km, Saudi Arabia 814 km, Syria 605 km, Turkey 331 km
Coastline: 58 km
Maritime claims: continental shelf:  not specified

territorial sea:  12 NM
Climate: mostly desert; mild to cool winters with dry, hot, cloudless summers; northern mountainous regions along Iranian and Turkish borders experience cold winters with occasionally heavy snows that melt in early spring, sometimes causing extensive flooding in central and southern Iraq
Terrain: mostly broad plains; reedy marshes along Iranian border in south with large flooded areas; mountains along borders with Iran and Turkey
Elevation extremes: lowest point:  Persian Gulf 0 m

highest point:  Haji Ibrahim 3,600 m
Natural resources: petroleum, natural gas, phosphates, sulfur
Land use: arable land:  12%

permanent crops:  0%

permanent pastures:  9%

forests and woodland:  0%

other:  79% (1993 est.)
Irrigated land: 25,500 sq km (1993 est.)
Natural hazards: dust storms, sandstorms, floods
Environment - current issues: government water control projects have drained most of the inhabited marsh areas east of An Nasiriyah by drying up or diverting the feeder streams and rivers; a once sizable population of Shi'a Muslims, who have inhabited these areas for thousands of years, has been displaced; furthermore, the destruction of the natural habitat poses serious threats to the area's wildlife populations; inadequate supplies of potable water; development of Tigris-Euphrates Rivers system contingent upon agreements with upstream riparian Turkey; air and water pollution; soil degradation (salination) and erosion; desertification
Environment - international agreements: party to:  Law of the Sea, Nuclear Test Ban

signed, but not ratified:  Environmental Modification


Countryfacts Information Courtesy: CIA Worldbook

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