Find the word definition


Iraqi Assyrians, Assyrian Iraqis or Assyrians in Iraq, are an ethnoreligious and linguistic minority in present-day Iraq. Assyrians in Iraq are those Assyrians still residing in the country of Iraq. They are (along with the Mandeans) an indigenous people of Iraq, and have direct cultural and genetic lineage from the ancient Mesopotamians, in particular from the Akkadian peoples ( Assyrians and Babylonians) who emerged in the region c.3000 BC, and the Aramean tribes who intermingled with them from the 9th century BC onwards.

Assyrians are a Semitic people who speak a modern-day Eastern Dialect of ancient Aramaic that has existed in Iraq since 1200 BC, of which retains even older Akkadian influences (the language which they originally spoke). They are a Christian people, and follow a collection of ethnic-based Eastern Christian denominations which first appeared in the region in the 1st century AD. The Assyrians of Iraq adhere to the Chaldean Catholic Church, Syriac Catholic Church, Assyrian Church of the East, Syriac Orthodox Church and Ancient Church of the East, in addition to other recently formed Assyrian Protestant churches including the Assyrian Pentecostal Church and Assyrian Evangelical Church.

According to the CIA, the Christians of Iraq or other religions (excluding Islam), make up 3%-5% of the Iraqi population. The last Iraqi census, in 1987, counted 1.4 million Christians, including the Assyrian community (4-5%), although many left the country during the 1990s when economic sanctions were imposed on the country. Other indigenous Assyrian communities can be found just outside Iraq's borders in "southeastern Turkey, northwestern Iran and northeastern Syria".