Marathon in Erbil, Iraq!

Well it looks like marathoners are going to have to add the Erbil International Marathon to their stable of 26.2 mile races.  Erbil successfully hosted its third annual event on October 25, 2013, with over 7,000 runners from 25 countries participating in the race which wove its way among the old and the new of this ancient but growing city.  Moreover, the event was recently sanctioned by the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) lending greater credibility to the event, which has drawn more than 15,000 runners over its three years of competition.

Participants ran (or walked) at distances of 4km, 10km and the full marathon.  The marathon was won by Kenyans in both the men’s and women’s categories.  The runners enjoyed a fair, sunny day as they enjoyed the camaraderie of their fellow participants from around the world. 

The event is billed as a run for peace, coexistence and harmony.  Who would think though, that people from around the world, with men, women and people of all sects could come together in Iraq to run a marathon?  But it has happened in Kurdistan’s capital Erbil.  Partly because this is not the Iraq most are used to seeing in the mass media.  This is, The Other Iraq! 

Photos from:


More information: