Last week, following the capture of Mosul by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the United Nations raised the crisis in Iraq to a level three humanitarian disaster—its highest designation—with over 1.5 million displaced people. In an email interview, David Romano, associate professor of political science at Missouri State University, discussed the refugee situation in Iraq.
WPR: What impact have refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) had in Iraq and globally since 2003?
David Romano: The impact of refugees and IDPs on Iraq and globally is very multifaceted and depends on the context. After the 2003 invasion of Iraq and removal of Saddam Hussein's regime, many pre-2003 Iraqi refugees and IDPs looked forward to returning home, while at the same time new groups of refugees and IDPs were created by these events.