To most Iraqis, the snows, which covered the Iraqi capital last Tuesday, were a welcome sight. From Baghdad to Mosul, Iraqi children were lobbing snowballs and building snowmen.
In Baghdad’s Tahrir Square, the bastion of the county’s protest movement, protesters scribbled anti-government slogans on the snow-covered ground.
The snowfall comes after months of turmoil, which saw the death of 500 people, many of whom are political dissidents killed by security forces during the protests, according to Fox News.
Snows are not an uncommon sight in Iraq. Even year, the country’s mountainous northern regions are dusted with snow, but this marks the first snowfall in Baghdad since 2008. And although the unusual phenomenon was met with glee, some have expressed concerns of changing whether patterns due to climate change, which has yet to be confirmed by experts.
This extreme weather also hit parts of Lebanon and Syria, where it wasn’t met with the same enthusiasm. Refugees in the city of Manbij in Syria and in Arsal, Lebanon struggled to keep warm and access food during the snowstorm.
— Mindy Belz (@mcbelz) February 8, 2020
“Snow covers the Syrian refugee camps in Arsal, Lebanon. In these camps, there’s the very bare minimum supplies to protect from the cold. Children are in danger of freezing to death,” one Twitter user wrote.
Snow covers the Syrian refugee camps in Arsal, Lebanon. In these camps, there’s the very bare minimum supplies to protect from the cold. Children are in danger of freezing to death. Every year this happens, and the UN still hasn’t made any progress to prevent this tragedy. #Syria pic.twitter.com/qeLtcwWlg4
— Jennifer (@JennRollins1002) February 9, 2020