By a cluster of tents, teenagers gather to watch Marwan give out marine-style haircuts in his makeshift barber shop. After all, no teenager here wants to be mistaken for a “DAESH” member [the Arabic acronym for ISIS].

Not far away, Adem’s children play with stones as he looks on with worry. He is Sudanese and name-calling because of their black skin is common. Adem came to Iraq to avoid civil war and poverty, but he didn’t expect his adopted home town of Tikrit to be overrun by ISIS.

Across the camp in Sulaiman’s tent, the mood is sombre. Hazar lays out the ID cards that belonged to his dead children. They were killed by aerial bombardment. “We put a white flag on our convoy of cars to show that we are civilians,” he says, dejectedly. They were denied entry into the relatively safe Kurdistan because, as Sunni Arabs, the Kurds view them as possible ISIS infiltrators.

In Stranded Lives, against the backdrop of the Laylan IDP Camp, Hawre Khalid tells their stories.

—Cathy Otten


Editors’ Note: Metrography is Iraq’s first photography agency. This story forms just one small part of Metrography’s collective project ” A Map of Displacement,” which aims to dive into the lives of displaced Iraqis.

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