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Not to be confused with Bagdad Airport.
Baghdad International Airport
مطار بغداد الدولي
Matar Baġdād ad-Dowaly


BGW is located in Iraq
Location of airport in Iraq
Airport type Public / Military
Operator Iraqi Government
Location Baghdad, Iraq
Hub for
Elevation AMSL 114 ft / 35 m
Coordinates 33°15′45″N 044°14′04″E / 33.26250°N 44.23444°E / 33.26250; 44.23444
Direction Length Surface
ft m
15R/33L 10,830 3,301 Concrete
15L/33R 13,124 4,000 Concrete
Statistics (2009)
Total passengers Increase 7,500,000 (estimate)
Source: DAFIF[1][2]

Baghdad International Airport (IATA: BGWICAO: ORBI) (Arabic: مطار بغداد الدولي‎), is Iraq's largest airport, located in a suburb about 16 km (9.9 mi) west of downtown Baghdad in the Baghdad Governorate. It is the home base for Iraq's national airline, Iraqi Airways.



The present airport was developed under a consortium led by French company, Spie Batignolles, under an agreement made in 1979. The Iran/Iraq war delayed full opening of the airport until 1987. The airport at the time was opened as Saddam International Airport, bearing the name of the then-president of Iraq, Saddam Hussein.[3]


Most of Baghdad's civil flights stopped in 1991, when the United Nations imposed restrictions on Iraq after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait during the Persian Gulf War. Because of the no-fly zone imposed on Iraq by the United States and the United Kingdom, Iraqi Airways was only able to continue domestic flights for limited periods. Internationally, Baghdad was able to receive occasional charter flights carrying medicine, aid workers, and government officials. Royal Jordanian Airlines operated regular flights from Amman to Baghdad.


Inside view of the terminal in 2003, showing an abandoned and nonfunctional FIDS (note the red and white icon for the long-defunct East German airline Interflug in the fourth row from the bottom), in front of empty check-in desks and passport control

In April 2003, US-led forces invaded Iraq and changed the airport's name to Baghdad International Airport. The ICAO code for the airport consequently changed from ORBS to ORBI; the IATA code subsequently switched from SDA to BGW, which previously referred to all Baghdad airports and before that to Al Muthana Airport when Saddam was in power.

Civilian control of the airport was returned to the Iraqi Government in 2004.


The current entrance to Baghdad International Airport, 2007

Terminal C has been refreshed with three active gate areas for carriers operating from the airport.

Baghdad Airport Road, connecting the airport with the Green Zone, which was once a dangerous route full of IEDs, has been refurbished with palm trees, manicured lawns, and a fountain, with Turkish assistance.[4]

Military use[edit]

Within the airport there is a separate enclave called the New Al Muthana Air Base where No. 23 Squadron IqAF is based with three Lockheed C-130E Hercules transport aircraft[citation needed] and the home to a number of Sukhoi Su-25's.[5]

Airport developments[edit]

Airline service[edit]

  • The airport officially reverted to civilian control on 25 August 2004. Iraqi Airways resumed regular flights, and courier carriers also began flights.
  • On 9 October 2009, Middle East Airlines announced flights to Beirut from Baghdad. Flights will operate 4x weekly from 29 October and soon after upgraded to daily service. They will use Airbus A320 aircraft for the flights.
  • On 7 June 2012, Qatar Airways launched direct flights from Doha, four times a week.
  • On 6 March 2013, Iraqi Airways resumed direct flights from Gatwick Airport to Baghdad International Airport, flights will operate twice a week. This comes after a 23-year hiatus.

Expansion plans[edit]

On 18 May 2010, plans were unveiled for an expansion of Baghdad International Airport, which will double its capacity to 15 million passengers per year. The expansion, to be funded by foreign investors, will include the construction of three new terminals and the refurbishment of the existing three terminals, which will each accommodate 2.5 million passengers annually.[7]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

A flying carpet sculpture on the wall at BIAP. (2011)


Airlines Destinations
Air Arabia Sharjah (suspended)[8]
Air Caucasus Tbilisi[9]
Austrian Airlines
operated by Tyrolean Airways
Bosnian Wand Airlines
operated by Hermes Airlines
Stockholm-Arlanda [10]
EgyptAir Cairo
Emirates Dubai-International (suspended)[8]
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi (suspended)[8]
flydubai Dubai-International (suspended)[8]
Georgian Airways Tbilisi[11]
Gulf Air Bahrain
Iran Air Birjand, Isfahan, Mashhad
Iraqi Airways Amman-Queen Alia, Ankara, Basra, Beirut, Cairo, Copenhagen, Delhi, Dubai-International, Erbil, Frankfurt, Guangzhou,[12] Isfahan, Istanbul-Atatürk, Kuala Lumpur, London-Gatwick, Mumbai, Mosul, Mashhad, Najaf, Sulaymaniyah, Stockholm-Arlanda, Tehran-Imam Khomeini, Vienna
Mahan Air Isfahan, Tehran-Imam Khomeini
Meraj Airlines Tehran-Imam Khomeini, Mashhad, Kermanshah
Middle East Airlines Beirut (suspended)[8]
Qatar Airways Doha
Qeshm Airlines Isfahan
Royal Jordanian Amman-Queen Alia
Turkish Airlines Istanbul-Atatürk (suspended)[8]
Seasonal: Antalya (suspended)[8]
Zagros Airlines Isfahan, Tehran-Imam Khomeini


Airlines Destinations
Click Airways Erbil, Sharjah
Coyne Airways Dubai-International
SNAS/DHL Bahrain
Etihad Cargo Abu Dhabi
FitsAir Dubai-International

Incidents and accidents[edit]

  • On 22 November 2003, a European Air Transport Airbus A300B4 freighter, registered OO-DLL, operating on behalf of DHL Aviation, was hit by an SA-14 'Grail' missile shortly after take-off. The airplane lost hydraulic pressure and thus the controls. After extending the landing gear to create more drag, the crew piloted the plane using differences in engine thrust and landed the plane with minimal further damage. All 3 crew survived. Civilians planes routinely perform corkscrew landings to minimise the risk of damage from surface weapons.[13]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Media related to Baghdad International Airport at Wikimedia Commons

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baghdad_International_Airport — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
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2594 news items

Wall Street Journal

New York Times
Tue, 27 Jan 2015 03:02:28 -0800

BAGHDAD — A commercial jet carrying 154 passengers was struck by gunfire as it landed at Baghdad International Airport, officials said Tuesday, adding to fears that Iraq's most important transportation hub remains vulnerable to militant attacks.

Airport Technology

Airport Technology
Wed, 28 Jan 2015 05:07:15 -0800

A FlyDubai Boeing 737-800 aircraft has been struck by gunfire after it landed at Baghdad International Airport in Iraq. Flight FZ-215 from Dubai to Baghdad was carrying 154 passengers on board. The incident, which is a suspected Islamic State attack ...

Petra News Agency

Petra News Agency
Sat, 31 Jan 2015 07:06:15 -0800

Kilani told Petra that RJ had suspended the Baghdad bound flights due to an accident that happened to an aircraft belonging to the Dubai Aviation Corporation, Fly Dubai. The plane had come under fire while landing at the Baghdad International Airport.

Yahoo! Maktoob News

Yahoo! Maktoob News
Fri, 30 Jan 2015 06:03:45 -0800

Speaking privately to me, this former US military officer summed up the fears of many, fears that have been realised this week in the shooting incident at Baghdad International Airport. It's still unclear whether the incident was a live fire exercise ...
TwinCities.com-Pioneer Press
Tue, 27 Jan 2015 06:37:30 -0800

FILE - In this Dec. 28, 2005 file photo, an Iraqi Airways plane sits on the tarmac at Baghdad International Airport in Iraq. Multiple airlines from the United Arab Emirates said Tuesday they were canceling flights to Baghdad after a passenger plane ...
Khaleej Times
Tue, 27 Jan 2015 11:52:30 -0800

“After landing at Baghdad International Airport (BGW) on January 26, 2015, damage to the aircraft fuselage consistent with small arms fire was discovered on flydubai flight FZ 215,” the flydubai spokesperson said. The airline official said the firing ...

Foreign Policy (blog)

Foreign Policy (blog)
Thu, 29 Jan 2015 05:52:30 -0800

Iraq. Turkish Airlines and Lebanon's Middle East Airlines resumed flights into Baghdad Thursday. At least seven airlines suspended service to the Iraqi capital after gunfire hit a FlyDubai plane as it was landing at Baghdad International Airport Monday ...
Tue, 27 Jan 2015 14:52:30 -0800

A short statement by MEA said that the company "canceled the flights to and from the Iraqi capital for Tuesday given the circumstances at Baghdad International Airport." MEA had only one scheduled flight to Baghdad at noon and another flight from there ...

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