Iraq: Baghdad Wall ‘Not a Wall Exactly’

PM Rules Out Actual Wall Around Capital City

Late last week, reports began emerging of plans for Baghdad to be walled in, with security forces suggesting the move would be an effort to totally prevent ISIS infiltration and attacks. Other rumors suggested this was going to be a 10 foot high wall and a full moat.

That’s apparently not going to be the case, as Prime Minister Hayder Abadi issued a statement dismissing the report, saying there would be “no wall or fence,” and that Baghdad must remain the capital of all Iraqis.

Which doesn’t apparently mean the wall isn’t going to happen. Rather, the Interior Ministry is insisting the new Baghdad wall is “not a wall exactly,” but rather will be a figurative wall of military checkpoints surrounding the city and preventing ISIS entry.

They also insisted that the “not exactly” wall wasn’t meant to keep Sunnis in general out of the capital, or to change any demographics in the city. Given how unsuccessful checkpoints have been in the past at preventing attacks in Baghdad, this likely ultimately means more security theater, and very little practical difference.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of