Will Shrinking Rivers Force Kurdistan’s Nomads to Abandon Their Lifestyle?

May 18, 2013, National Geographic Newswatch

Iraqi Kurdistan is home to several groups of nomads, ethnic Kurds and Arabs who migrate between winter villages and summer pastures.

“In winter, we live in houses, but in the summer, in the wild, in tents,” says Ali Tahir Ibrahim, part of a family of Kurdish nomads from the Nerway tribe.

On a recent spring day, he and his brothers were bringing their sheep to drink from the Duhok River in Northwest Kurdistan, just above the Duhok dam.

“We are just passing through here,” he explains. “The sheep can drink it, and even some people drink this water. We live far away from the water; we [usually] transport water by trucks.”

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