As many as 900,000 people could be displaced within Iraq as a result of a military intervention, according to UN estimates (UN OCHA 7 Jan 03, p10). The majority of the displaced would probably flee from the centre and the south of the country to northern Iraq, in the zone controlled by Iraqi Kurdish authorities. Internal displacement could result from fighting, but also from deliberate war strategy. The Iraqi regime could force people living in the South to flee, for instance by spreading the rumor that weapons of mass destruction will be used to generate panic and instigate large scale flight (CHC 23 Dec 02).
25 February 2003 | Country Profile