Babylon & Beyond

Observations from Iraq, Iran,
Israel, the Arab world and beyond

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IRAQ: Flowers in Baghdad

April 21, 2009 |  3:41 pm


Iraqis stopped to smell the roses this week as they visited the first  Baghdad flower festival since the collapse of Saddam Hussein’s regime.  The exhibit at  Zawra Park in the center of Baghdad was another sign of people’s wish for normalcy after years of bloodshed.

The exhibition was advertised with the slogan “Baghdad, Flowers and Peace” and had Arab and foreign companies displaying their products.

“It is not strange to see such an exhibition in Baghdad as we know how the Iraqis are taking care of  roses and flowers,” said Raad Saddam, the exhibition’s supervisor. “If we look at history, we will see that the Sumerian and the Assyrians had their huge gardens .”

Moyad Ibrahim, from Baghdad's Adhamiya district, said: "This is the first exhibition. This gives a message that the flowers are replacing the blood."

-- Raheem Salman in Baghdad 

All Pictures by Raheem Salman