Lured to Iraq by promises of big pay, thousands of foreign workers are stuck in a purgatory of corruption, poor contracting oversight, and inadequate labor regulation.

Iraq a trap for foreign workers

Iraq a trap for foreign workers
A sign posted by stranded Ukrainian workers outside an abandoned construction site in Baghdad's fortified Green Zone. (STAFF/Iraq Oil Report)

Denis Skopiuk, a 29-year-old worker from Ukraine, said goodbye to his young daughter, Emilia, and traveled to Baghdad for the promise of earning $2,500 per month building villas that would house heads of state attending the Arab League Summit. Like thousands of foreign workers, Skopiuk found Iraq’s huge demand for skilled labor too lucrative to pass up.Several months later, however, in the midst of the Iraqi summer heat, Skopiuk and dozens of colleagues are stuck — without exit visas, t...

This content is for registered users. Please login to continue.
If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a subscription or sign up for a free trial.