BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Friday, 11 January 2008, 17:27 GMT
Baghdad wakes up to rare snowfall
An Iraqi man and his child enjoy the snow in eastern Baghdad on 11 January
Snow is associated with north Iraq
Snow has fallen in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, for the first time in living memory - though it mostly melted into puddles on touching the ground.

People came out on to the streets to watch and some Iraqis said it was the first time they had seen such weather other than in films.

Snow is common in Iraq's mountainous Kurdish north but the closest thing Baghdad usually sees is hail.

Freezing night temperatures in the city are forecast for the weekend.

"I woke up and I saw snow falling, so I woke up all the family and told them to come and see the snowfall," Baghdad resident Aysar Khaled told Reuters news agency.

"Everyone in Baghdad is delighted because this is a new thing, this is the first time that it snows in Baghdad... The view is very beautiful."

Mohammed Abdul-Hussein, 63 and retired, told the Associated Press he had heard from his father when he was young that snow fell in the early 1940s on the outskirts of northern Baghdad.

"But snow falling in Baghdad in such a magnificent scene was beyond my imagination," he added.

Fawzi Karim, 40, said he had asked his 80-year-old mother, and she had never seen snow before in Iraq.

"This is so unusual, and I don't know whether or not it's a lesson from God," he added.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific