Middle East

Suicides surge in Iraq in 2021

Iraqi authorities report 772 suicide cases this year

Ibrahim Saleh   | 25.12.2021
Suicides surge in Iraq in 2021

BAGHDAD

Suicides have surged in Iraq in 2021, with more than 700 people taking their own lives, according to Iraqi authorities on Saturday.

Khaled Al-Muhanna, a spokesman for the Iraqi Interior Ministry, said 772 people have committed suicide this year, up from 663 suicides in 2020.

He said around 36. 6% of those who committed suicide were under 20 years old, according to the state news agency INA.

“While males accounted for 55.9% of the suicide cases in 2021, females constituted 44.1%,” Al-Muhanna said.

The spokesman attributed the rise in suicides to psychological pressure, family violence, deteriorating economic conditions, and rising unemployment and poverty in the country.

He said Iraqi authorities have adopted a package of measures to confront the phenomenon, including the formation of specialized committees to look into the causes of the suicides.

Unemployment and poverty in oil-rich Iraq have surged to hit 27% and 31.7% respectively, according to the latest statistics of the Iraqi Ministry of Planning.

The spread of the coronavirus pandemic since early 2020 has had a severe toll on Iraq’s oil-dependent economy following a significant decline in oil prices.

Oil revenues in Iraq cover about 95 percent of state expenditures.

*Writing by Ibrahim Mukhtar

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