Lebanese flee crisis seeking jobs in Iraq

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Iraq, once synonymous with conflict and chaos, is becoming a land of opportunity for Lebanese job-seekers fleeing a deep economic crisis back home.

Akram Johari is one of thousands who fled Lebanon’s tumbling currency and skyrocketing poverty rates.

Last year, he packed his bags and boarded a plane from Beirut to Baghdad, using social media to search for opportunities.

“I didn’t have enough time to look for a job in the Gulf,” the 42-year-old said, explaining why he eschewed the more traditional path for those seeking economic opportunities in the region.

With its relative proximity and visas on arrival for Lebanese, the Iraqi capital seemed a good option.

“I had to take quick action, and so I came to Baghdad and began searching for work on Instagram,” Johari said, speaking in a restaurant he has run for about a month.

Lebanon is grappling with an unprecedented financial crisis that the World Bank says is of a scale usually associated with war.

Beirut’s…

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