Hundreds of Iraq’s exiled academics return home

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 Azzaman, May 5, 2014

Hundreds of exiled academics have returned home and are already teaching at the country’s 29 state-run universities, said Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research.

The minister Ali al-Adeeb said his ministry was working hard to assign faculty posts to any exiled academic who had left and was willing to return.

He said 576 academics had returned from exile in the past three years and were now teaching at government universities and institutions.

There has been a surge in the number of students sent abroad to read for higher degrees in different specializations.

Adeeb said there were more than 10,000 Iraqi students reading at prestigious universities in western countries.

“The government has earmarked $350 million to finance Iraqi students abroad,” he said.

Iraqi university student population is estimated at 700,000 and 250,000 high-school graduates joined Iraqi universities.  

There are more than 40 private universities and colleges in Iraq.