No hope for a homeland

Many residents of southern Iraq's marshes worry that their way of life will end when new oil production begins in the coming years.
Iraqi marsh resident Fad'aa Abdullah is worried that new oil production near her home will result in ruin for her family. (ALI ABU IRAQ/Iraq Oil Report)

BASRA - Surrounded by her four children, Fad'aa Abdullah peered out the door of her small cane hut at an oil field in the distance. Her face was lined with wrinkles that grew deeper as she grimaced and launched into a tirade against the foreign petroleum companies operating near her home in southern Iraq's marshes.

"Oil for us is nothing but flames and smoke that hang over our huts," she said through tears. "We haven't benefited from the oil development here so far, but all we hear about is the wealth it will bring."

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