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Iraq (pronounced /iːˈrɑːk/ or /ɪˈræk/, Arabic: العراق Al-Irāq), officially the Republic of Iraq (Arabic: جمهورية العراق (help·info) Jumhūrīyat Al-Irāq, Kurdish: كؤماری عهراق, Komara Îraqê, Neo-Aramaic: ܥܸܪܵܩ) in OTL is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert.
Iraq is bordered by Jordan to the west, Syria to the northwest, Turkey to the north, Iran to the east, and Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to the south. Iraq has a narrow section of coastline measuring 58 km (35 miles) on the northern Persian Gulf. The capital city, Baghdad (Arabic: بغداد Baġdād), is in the center-east of the country.
Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run through the centre of Iraq, flowing from northwest to southeast. These provide Iraq with agriculturally capable land and contrast with the steppe and desert landscape that covers most of Western Asia.
Historically, the territory comprising Iraq was known in Europe by the Greek toponym 'Mesopotamia' (Land between the rivers). Iraq has been home to continuous successive civilizations since the 6th millennium BC. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers is identified as the cradle of civilization and the birthplace of writing and the wheel.
Throughout its long history, Iraq has been the center of the Akkadian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Hellenistic, Parthian, Sassanid and Abbasid empires, and part of the Achaemenid, Roman, Rashidun, Umayyad, Mongol, Safavid, Afsharid, Ottoman and British empires. The Kingdom of Iraq was founded in 1932.
Beginning with an invasion in 2003, Iraq came under military occupation by a multinational coalition of forces, mainly American and British.
Sovereignty was transferred to the Iraqi Interim Government in June 2004. A new Constitution of Iraq was then approved by referendum and a new Government of Iraq was elected. As of March 2010, 96,000 US troops remain in the country. There is a deadline for the full withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Iraq by 31 December 2011.
Alternate versions of Iraq have been discovered in the multiverse:
- Iraq (Cherry, Plum, and Chrysanthemum)
- Iraq (Scotland says "Yes")
- Iraq (Vegetarian World)
- Islamic Republic of Iraq (An Independent in 2000)
- Republic of Iraq (President McCain)
Iraq has also been discovered to belong to other nations:
- Hashemite Kingdom (Dai-tō-a)
- Republic of The Middle East (Sino-Roman)
- State of Southwestern Asia (Zhou)
- United Arab Republic (Nasserism in Arabia)
- United Arab Republic (Great Nuclear War)
Iraq also plays a prominent role in the following timelines: