Iraq’s female weightlifters have experience participating in international tournaments and they are training in order to continue their successes. The weightlifters have participated in the West Asian Championship in the Jordanian capital, Amman, and the World Championship in the United States, recording victories in both.
Their next goal is to win a medal for Iraq in the next Olympic Games, which will be held in the Japanese capital, Tokyo, in 2020.
Sport in Iraq continues to enjoy a recovery as it had been blighted by the spread of ISIS, who had prevented both men and women from participating in sport activities as they used to.
For example, Mosul’s football team, Mosul FC, re-established itself after the liberation of the city. The club played its first fixture in the University of Mosul, which was liberated a number of months ago as part of operations to retake the eastern side of Mosul. Since that time, students, teachers and volunteers have attempted to bring life back to the university, allowing games like the one between Mosul FC and the Nineveh Police Force to take place. For Fathi, football fans, and Mosul FC, they hope that this game will be the first of many, and a new chapter for the city’s footballing and sporting future.
Furthermore, the demise and defeat of the so-called Islamic State the country has allowed goods and hobbies that were formerly banned to be brought back to life. Many stories of musicians and artists returning to their work after being forced to play and paint in silence have been well documented.
In areas liberated from ISIS, civil society is flourishing once again. From sports and art, to theatre and music, Iraqis both young and old are coming together to restitch the fabric of their society. Such initiatives are bring citizens of the country together after years of political and social divisions.