Iraqi Officials Blame Sunni Refugees for Baghdad Bombings

Over 100,000 Anbar Refugees Headed to Baghdad in Past Two Weeks

Iraqi Shi’ite officials are blaming Sunni refugees from the Anbar Province for the recent round of bombings tearing through the capital city of Baghdad, saying they are providing cover for ISIS to smuggle explosives in.

Amid mounting losses in Anbar, over 100,000 new refugees have flocked to Baghdad and are living on the city’s outskirts. The Interior Ministry says they believe the displaced are to blame for rising numbers of car bombs.

Of course, “rising” is a fairly vague term. Baghdad is awash in bombings pretty much every day, and slightly more bombings in recent days could just as easily be a function of an emboldened ISIS, whose victories are both boosting their aggressiveness and the refugee tide.

The refugees provide a convenient scapegoat for officials, however, who have been unable to do anything about bombings for a solid decade now. Despite this being a convenient excuse, blaming the refugees is likely to further exacerbate sectarian tensions in the city, and the nation.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.