THE LAST LEPER IN IRAQ: After years living with his fellow patients, Iraq’s last leprosy patient is now left alone with his memories.

He may well be the last leper alive in Iraq. Ghazai Nasser-Dhahi doesn’t know exactly how old he is – he has no birth certificate but was born in the southern city of Nasiriyah – but he has a long memory and can tell you the history of Iraq’s leprosy colony, one of the oldest in the Middle East.

By Mahdi Al-Saadi in Nasiriyah

“I got ill in the mid-60s and have lived in a leper colony ever since,” the old man told Al Menasa. The first one he went to was an infamous one in Amarah. It had been built in 1920 to isolate the lepers.

Leprosy is caused by a type of bacteria, the mycobacterium leprae, which doctors say is transmitted through droplets from the mouth and nose, if another person comes into close contact with a sufferer. Today, it is possible to treat leprosy with a range of drugs but for a long time, the only cure was to isolate those who caught the disease.

“Leprosy causes the erosion of body parts such as the nose and the limbs due to its effect on the ends of the nerves,” explains Radi al-Saadi, a skin doctor in Amara. “The affected people were usually isolated to prevent transmission of the disease, when there was no treatment.”

The World Health Organisation writes that, the “elimination of leprosy as public health problem – defined as a registered prevalence of less than one case per 10 000 population -was achieved globally in 2000”.

Nasser-Dhahi says he has lived through a lot and likely escaped death several times. When the people of Amarah rose up against former Iraqi dictator, Saddam Hussein, in the 1990s, the city was attacked by government soldiers. “There were about 20 of us, elderly and blind, and the people of the city smuggled us out of the colony to save us,” the old man recalls. “I don’t know what happened to the friends that were left behind in the colony.”

Nasser-Dhahi has been moved around several times. At one stage, he ended up in Basra but the provincial health authorities sent the lepers back to Amarah because, they said, they had no facilities there to help them. At first, the patients lived in caravans on the outskirts of Amarah and then later in a house built near a military barracks.

In 2003, Nasser-Dhahi says the lepers were in danger again as US and coalition forces bombed the nearby army barracks.

After the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in Iraq, the lepers were treated by Japanese welfare organisations. However by then, Nasser-Dhahi and most of his fellow lepers were old and frail and eventually they have died, one by one, until now only Nasser-Dhahi remains.

He is left alone in the house he has lived in for years, with only his memories of trying to survive and the love and friendship of his fellow lepers, to keep him company.

Related Articles

212 Comments

  1. I love reading a post that can make men and women think.
    Also, thanks for allowing me to comment!

  2. Someone essentially assist to make severely posts
    I’d state. That is the first time I frequented your website
    page and so far? I amazed with the analysis you made to create this particular
    post incredible. Excellent task!

    Look at my web page :: apl greatwall99

  3. I became honored to receive a call from my friend as soon as
    he discovered the important suggestions shared on your site.
    Going through your blog article is a real great experience.
    Thank you for taking into account readers like me, and I would like for you the best of achievements like a professional in this surface area.

    My web site :: mpc-install.com

  4. Aw, this was an incredibly good post. Spending some time and actual effort to produce a
    very good article? but what can I say? I put things off
    a lot and don’t manage to get nearly anything done.

    Here is my homepage; https://kebe.top

  5. Magnificent items from you, man. I’ve take into accout your stuff prior to and you’re simply extremely fantastic.
    I really like what you’ve bought here, certainly like what
    you’re stating and the best way by which you say it.
    You’re making it entertaining and you continue
    to take care of to keep it sensible. I cant wait to read far more from you.
    That is really a wonderful site.

    Feel free to surf to my blog post http://frun-test.sakura.ne.jp/

  6. I have been exploring for a little for any high quality articles or
    blog posts in this kind of space . Exploring in Yahoo I finally stumbled upon this site.

    Reading this information So i’m glad to exhibit that I have a very good uncanny feeling I found out just what I needed.
    I most for sure will make certain to don?t overlook this website and provides it a glance regularly.

    Also visit my webpage – mpc-install.com

  7. Thank you for your site post. Jones and I are already saving to get a
    new book on this matter and your short article has made all of
    us to save the money. Your thoughts really solved all our queries.
    In fact, over what we had acknowledged just before we ran into your wonderful blog.
    I actually no longer have doubts and a troubled mind because you have attended
    to all of our needs here. Thanks

    my blog … mpc-install.com

  8. I’m honored to receive a call from a friend as soon as he identified the important tips
    shared on the site. Going through your blog article is a real amazing experience.
    Many thanks for considering readers much like me, and I wish you the best of success for a professional in this
    domain.

    Here is my web site; clubriders.men

  9. When I originally left a comment I appear to have clicked the -Notify
    me when new comments are added- checkbox and now
    every time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the exact same comment.
    There has to be a means you can remove me from that
    service? Appreciate it!

    my web site: mpc-install.com

  10. I’ve been exploring for a little for any high quality articles or weblog posts on this sort of house .
    Exploring in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this site.
    Studying this info So i am glad to exhibit that I have an incredibly just right uncanny feeling I came upon exactly what I needed.

    I most without a doubt will make sure to do not omit this website and provides it a
    glance on a relentless basis.

    My homepage; mpc-install.com

  11. What’s up i am kavin, its my first occasion to
    commenting anywhere, when i read this article i thought i could also make comment due
    to this sensible post.

  12. Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this article and the rest of the website
    is also very good.

    Also visit my website kebe.top

  13. Great blog here! Additionally your website loads
    up fast! What web host are you the usage of? Can I get your affiliate hyperlink in your host?
    I wish my web site loaded up as fast as yours lol.

    Here is my web-site: kebe.top

  14. I absolutely love your blog and find a lot of your post’s to be exactly what I’m looking for.
    can you offer guest writers to write content in your case?
    I wouldn’t mind writing a post or elaborating on some of the subjects you write
    concerning here. Again, awesome weblog!

    Here is my web blog http://www.lubertsi.net/

  15. I do not even understand how I ended up here, however I thought
    this publish used to be good. I don’t recognize who you’re but certainly you’re going
    to a famous blogger in the event you are not already 😉 Cheers!

    Here is my webpage – kebe.top

  16. Greetings from Ohio! I’m bored at work so I decided
    to check out your blog on my iphone during lunch break.

    I love the information you present here and can’t wait
    to take a look when I get home. I’m surprised at how quick your
    blog loaded on my mobile .. I’m not even using
    WIFI, just 3G .. Anyhow, wonderful site!

    Feel free to visit my website: Lincoln

  17. Hi there very nice site!! Guy .. Beautiful ..
    Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds additionally…I’m glad to seek out a
    lot of useful info right here within the publish, we need develop more techniques in this regard, thank
    you for sharing.

    Feel free to visit my page :: clubriders.men

  18. Hello, every time i used to check website posts here in the early hours in the daylight, since
    i love to find out more and more.

  19. Hey there, You have performed an excellent job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends.

    I am confident they’ll be benefited from this web site.

    Here is my web-site; chengdian.cc

  20. I really like reading through a post that will make men and women think.
    Also, thank you for allowing me to comment!

    Here is my blog post: Angelia

  21. Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let
    you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly.
    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
    I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.

    Have a look at my website: http://www.lubertsi.net

  22. I keep listening to the news update lecture about receiving boundless online grant applications so I have been looking around for the most excellent site to get one.
    Could you advise me please, where could i acquire some?

    My blog mpc-install.com

  23. Hello! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate
    a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having problems finding one?
    Thanks a lot!

    my web blog – clubriders.men

  24. I?m amazed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that?s both equally educative and engaging, and
    without a doubt, you’ve hit the nail on the head.
    The problem is something not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about.
    I’m very happy I came across this in my hunt for something concerning this.

    My web page – http://haojiafu.net/

  25. This is very interesting, You’re an overly skilled blogger.
    I’ve joined your feed and stay up for in quest of extra of your magnificent post.
    Additionally, I have shared your website in my social networks

    Here is my web page: clubriders.men

  26. Hello, i believe that i saw you visited my weblog so i got here to go back the desire?.I’m attempting to
    find issues to enhance my website!I suppose its good enough
    to make use of a few of your ideas!!

    Also visit my homepage; Laura

  27. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any
    widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest twitter updates.
    I’ve been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some
    time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this.
    Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy
    reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

    Check out my web-site … forum.adm-tolka.ru

  28. I got this web site from my friend who shared with me concerning
    this website and now this time I am browsing this website and reading very
    informative content at this place.

    Feel free to surf to my web site; mpc-install.com

  29. Many thanks for being my own mentor on this area. We enjoyed the article very much and most of all
    preferred the way in which you handled the aspect I thought to be controversial.
    You are always very kind to readers much like me and let me
    in my living. Thank you.

    Feel free to surf to my webpage :: http://www.qijiang520.com

  30. I like what you guys tend to be up too. Such clever work and coverage!
    Keep up the very good works guys I’ve incorporated you guys to my personal blogroll.

    Feel free to surf to my web blog – lubertsi.net

  31. I’m very happy to read this. This is the kind of manual that needs to be given and not the accidental misinformation that’s at
    the other blogs. Appreciate your sharing this best doc.

    Feel free to surf to my web page bbs.shishiedu.com

  32. I enjoy what you guys are up too. This sort of clever work and reporting!

    Keep up the very goood works guys I’ve incorportated you guys to my personal blogroll.

  33. I used to be suggested this website via
    my cousin. I am now not positive whether this put up is
    written by means of him as nobody else understand such certain about my
    trouble. You’re incredible! Thanks!

    my blog: http://www.mi77b.cn

  34. Simply desire to say your article is as amazing. The clarity in your post is just excellent and i can assume you’re knowledgeable in this subject.
    Fine along with your permission allow me to grasp your RSS feed to stay updated with forthcoming
    post. Thanks 1,000,000 and please carry on the rewarding work.

  35. My wife and i got so relieved when Ervin managed to carry out his preliminary
    research with the precious recommendations he obtained through your weblog.
    It’s not at all simplistic just to always be giving freely helpful tips that many many
    others may have been trying to sell. We remember
    we’ve got the writer to give thanks to because of that.
    The most important illustrations you have made, the simple site menu, the relationships you will make
    it possible to foster – it is everything amazing, and it’s helping
    our son in addition to our family imagine that this concept is excellent, and that is particularly vital.
    Thanks for all the pieces!

    Here is my page; Kenny

  36. I beloved as much as you’ll receive carried out proper here.
    The caricature is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish.

    nonetheless, you command get bought an shakiness over that you wish
    be turning in the following. in poor health indisputably come more beforehand once more as exactly
    the similar just about a lot continuously inside case you protect this hike.

    my homepage: http://haojiafu.net/forum.php?mod=viewthread&tid=785369

  37. Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite reason appeared to
    be on the internet the easiest thing to be aware of.

    I say to you, I definitely get irked while people think about
    worries that they plainly don’t know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top as well as
    defined out the whole thing without having side-effects , people can take a signal.

    Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

    my web-site – clubriders.men

  38. I wanted to thank you for this great read!!
    I absolutely enjoyed every bit of it. I’ve got you book-marked to check out new things
    you post?

    Here is my site – 86x.org

  39. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this excellent
    blog! I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.

    I look forward to fresh updates and will share this site with my
    Facebook group. Chat soon!

    Feel free to surf to my webpage :: mpc-install.com

  40. Hello there! I could have sworn I?ve been to this blog before but after browsing through many of the articles I realized it?s new to me.
    Anyhow, I?m certainly delighted I discovered it and I?ll be book-marking it and checking back often!

    Look at my website: forum.adm-tolka.ru

  41. Hi, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your website in Safari, it looks fine
    but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping.
    I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other then that, fantastic blog!

    Here is my site … bbs.yunweishidai.com

  42. continuously i used to read smaller articles or reviews which
    as well clear their motive, and that is also
    happening with this post which I am reading at this place.

    Feel free to surf to my webpage; kebe.top

  43. Hi there colleagues, its great piece of writing regarding cultureand
    completely explained, keep it up all the time.

    Stop by my homepage: Deloras

  44. Nice blog here! Also your website loads up fast! What web host are you using?
    Can I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my web site loaded up as
    fast as yours lol

    Also visit my web blog – atomy123.com

  45. hello!,I like your writing so a lot! proportion we communicate extra about your article on AOL?
    I require a specialist in this area to solve my problem. May be that is you!

    Looking forward to see you.

    Feel free to visit my page: Hans

  46. Hey, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues.

    When I look at your website in Ie, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other then that, great blog!

    my webpage – vetearii.free.fr

  47. I like the helpful info you provide in your articles.
    I’ll bookmark your blog and check again here regularly.
    I am quite certain I’ll learn lots of new stuff right here!
    Best of luck for the next!

    Feel free to surf to my website mpc-install.com

  48. Attractive portion of content. I just stumbled upon your web site and in accession capital to assert
    that I acquire actually loved account your weblog posts.
    Anyway I’ll be subscribing on your augment or even I fulfillment
    you get admission to constantly fast.

    my web page http://www.anapapansion.ru

  49. I have read some just right stuff here. Certainly worth bookmarking for revisiting.
    I wonder how so much effort you put to create this kind of fantastic
    informative website.

    Feel free to surf to my blog post – mpc-install.com

  50. I merely wanted to thank you once more for your
    amazing site you have created here. It is full of ideas for those who are actually interested in this kind of subject,
    specifically this very post. You really are all amazingly
    sweet as well as thoughtful of others as well as reading
    your blog posts is an excellent delight
    to me. And that of a generous gift! Jeff and I will certainly have enjoyment making
    use of your suggestions in what we need to do in a few weeks.

    Our record is a distance long which means your tips will be put to
    very good use.

    Also visit my web blog … https://kebe.top/viewtopic.php?id=1808582

  51. Its like you learn my thoughts! You seem to understand so
    much approximately this, such as you wrote the e book in it
    or something. I feel that you just can do with a few percent to pressure the message home
    a little bit, however other than that, that is great blog.
    A great read. I’ll certainly be back.

    my blog: lubertsi.net

  52. If games are not going in the direction that you anticipated, then it is most effective to
    merely show some restraint and let the game pass by.

  53. Nice blog here! Also your web site loads up very fast!
    What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your
    host? I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol

    My blog … clubriders.men

  54. Amazing blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download
    it from somewhere? A theme like yours with a few simple adjustements
    would really make my blog shine. Please let me know where you got your design. Thank you

    My web page … kebe.top

  55. I not to mention my guys ended up going through the nice items located on your
    web blog while quickly came up with an awful suspicion I never expressed respect
    to the blog owner for them. Most of the guys
    became for that reason thrilled to learn all of them and have without a doubt
    been taking pleasure in those things. Appreciation for genuinely really thoughtful and also for deciding on this
    form of helpful topics millions of individuals are really desirous to learn about.
    My very own honest regret for not expressing appreciation to you sooner.

    my web-site: duna-anapa.net.ru

  56. Hi there, just became alert to your blog through Google,
    and found that it is really informative. I am going to watch out
    for brussels. I?ll appreciate if you continue this in future.
    Numerous people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

    Feel free to visit my site; http://www.goldenanapa.ru

  57. This design is wicked! You most certainly know how to keep a reader amused.
    Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Great job.
    I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

    Also visit my web-site; kebe.top

  58. Heya i’m for the primary time here. I came across this board and I find It really useful & it
    helped me out a lot. I’m hoping to provide something back and aid others such as you helped me.

    Feel free to visit my blog post … clubriders.men

  59. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this brilliant blog!
    I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking
    and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to new updates
    and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group. Chat soon!

    my blog post … http://clubriders.men

  60. Hello all, here every person is sharing such familiarity,
    so it’s good to read this blog, and I used to visit this weblog daily.

    Look at my web-site; Mattie

  61. Great – I should certainly pronounce, impressed with your web site.

    I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs
    as well as related info ended up being truly easy to do to access.
    I recently found what I hoped for before you know it in the least.

    Quite unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something,
    site theme . a tones way for your customer to communicate.

    Excellent task.

    Also visit my website http://www.mufun.online

  62. I?m impressed, I have to admit. Seldom do I come across a blog that?s both equally educative and engaging,
    and let me tell you, you’ve hit the nail on the head.

    The issue is something which too few people are speaking intelligently about.
    Now i’m very happy that I stumbled across this during my hunt for something concerning this.

    Look into my blog post; http://haojiafu.net/

  63. Right here is the perfect site for everyone who really wants to understand this topic.

    You realize a whole lot its almost hard to
    argue with you (not that I personally would want to?HaHa).
    You certainly put a brand new spin on a topic that’s been discussed for ages.
    Great stuff, just great!

    Feel free to visit my web site :: anapa-alrosa.com.ru

  64. Hey there I am so grateful I found your site, I really found you by mistake, while I
    was searching on Digg for something else, Anyhow I am here
    now and would just like to say thank you for a marvelous
    post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to look over it all
    at the moment but I have saved it and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have
    time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up
    the excellent work.

    My webpage :: guaji333.com

  65. Awesome website you have here but I was wondering if you knew of any message boards that cover the same
    topics discussed in this article? I’d really like to
    be a part of online community where I can get opinions from other knowledgeable people that share the same interest.

    If you have any recommendations, please let me know.
    Thanks a lot!

    My web page qijiang520.com

  66. Hey! Someone in my Myspace group shared this
    site with us so I came to check it out. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this to my followers!
    Fantastic blog and fantastic style and design.

    Also visit my website – ncfysj.com

  67. I am really loving the theme/design of your blog.
    Do you ever run into any internet browser compatibility
    problems? A number of my blog readers have complained about my site not operating correctly in Explorer but looks great
    in Firefox. Do you have any suggestions to help fix this problem?

    my web-site; https://mpc-install.com/

  68. I wanted to thank you yet again for the amazing web site you have developed here.
    It really is full of ideas for those who are truly
    interested in this subject, in particular this very post.
    You really are all so sweet and thoughtful of others and also
    reading your blog posts is a fantastic delight in my opinion. And what a generous treat!

    Dan and I are going to have fun making use of your tips in what we should instead
    do in a few weeks. Our record is a kilometer long which means that your tips will be put to beneficial use.

    My page; shihan.com.ru

  69. Hey there! This is kind of off topic but I need some guidance
    from an established blog. Is it very difficult to set up your own blog?
    I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast.
    I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure
    where to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions?
    Cheers

    Here is my blog; https://mpc-install.com

  70. Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it is
    truly informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels.
    I’ll be grateful if you continue this in future.

    Many people will be benefited from your writing.
    Cheers!

    Look at my blog post http://chengdian.cc

  71. Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you
    penning this article and also the rest of the site is extremely good.

    My page :: Rodrigo

  72. I do not know whether it’s just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering issues
    with your site. It appears as if some of the text on your posts are running off the screen. Can somebody else please comment
    and let me know if this is happening to them too? This might be
    a issue with my internet browser because I’ve had
    this happen previously. Thanks

    My web page … http://www.qijiang520.com

  73. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation however I to
    find this matter to be actually one thing that I feel I would
    never understand. It kind of feels too complicated and very large for me.
    I’m having a look ahead to your subsequent post, I will try to get the grasp of it!

    Visit my website: mpc-install.com

  74. Hey! Someone in my Myspace group shared this site with us so I
    came to look it over. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m bookmarking and
    will be tweeting this to my followers! Excellent blog and fantastic design.

    Here is my blog; meteoritegarden.com

  75. I don’t even know the way I stopped up right here, however I thought this put up used to be great.
    I don’t understand who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you are not already.
    Cheers!

    Also visit my web page: http://www.1stanapa.ru

  76. This is very fascinating, You’re a very professional blogger.

    I have joined your rss feed and stay up for searching for more
    of your great post. Additionally, I’ve shared your site
    in my social networks!

    my webpage; clubriders.men

  77. I have been surfing on-line greater than three hours today, yet I by no means discovered any attention-grabbing article like yours.
    It’s lovely worth sufficient for me. In my view, if
    all webmasters and bloggers made good content material as
    you did, the web will be much more helpful than ever before.

    my blog anapa-alrosa.com.ru

  78. Terrific work! This is the kind of info that are supposed to be shared across the
    net. Disgrace on the seek engines for not positioning this submit
    upper! Come on over and talk over with my web site .
    Thank you =)

    Also visit my webpage … http://www.lubertsi.net

  79. I am also writing to make you know of the really good encounter my
    daughter obtained using yuor web blog. She came to understand plenty of pieces,
    which include what it’s like to possess a
    wonderful helping heart to make the rest effortlessly have an understanding of certain tortuous matters.
    You truly surpassed her desires. Thank you for offering the valuable,
    trusted, explanatory and in addition fun thoughts
    on that topic to Julie.

    my webpage: http://www.jujumaow.com/space-uid-1472346.html

  80. I’d like to thank you for the efforts you have
    put in writing this blog. I am hoping to check
    out the same high-grade content from you in the future as well.
    In truth, your creative writing abilities has encouraged
    me to get my own blog now 😉

    Here is my blog qijiang520.com

  81. Very soon this web site will be famous among all blogging and site-building visitors,
    due to it’s nice posts

    Check out my blog Laura

  82. I think this is one of the most important info for me. And i am
    glad reading your article. But should remark on few general
    things, The web site style is perfect, the articles is really excellent : D.
    Good job, cheers

    Feel free to visit my blog … Hiram

  83. Nice blog here! Also your website loads up very fast!

    What host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host?

    I wish my web site loaded up as fast as yours lol

    Check out my web-site: mpc-install.com

  84. Hey, I think your site might be having browser compatibility issues.
    When I look at your blog site in Chrome, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick
    heads up! Other then that, fantastic blog!

    my homepage; chengdian.cc

  85. We are a gaggle of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community.
    Your website provided us with useful info to paintings on. You have done
    an impressive activity and our entire group
    will be grateful to you.

    Also visit my web site; Angela

  86. What’s Taking place i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve
    discovered It positively useful and it has aided me out loads.
    I am hoping to contribute & help other users like its helped me.
    Great job.

    Here is my blog chengdian.cc

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button