Iraqi Passport

Iraqi Passport • Sephardi Voices UK

This treasure, from Sephardi Voices UK, is Niran Bassoon-Timan’s Iraqi passport.

“This is my Iraqi passport. Until the age of 15, I did not know what Iraqi passports looked like because Jews were not allowed to carry passports. This is my first passport and my last Iraqi passport. With this, I was able to leave Iraq in 1973. This is the first page of my passport showing my picture, my signature, my name and it’s giving a list of countries that this passport can be used including Turkey and all the Eastern Europe countries, UK, Luxembourg and other places.”

Niran was born in 1957 in Baghdad, Iraq. Her father was an eminent journalist and the family spoke the Baghdadi dialect of Arabic at home. She left Iraq in 1973. Today Niran is an activist, working with Arabic-speaking communities to tell the story of the Jews of Iraq.

Sephardi Voices UK is an oral history archive giving voice to the stories of Jews from Arab-speaking countries who resettled in the UK. Visit their site here:

We love this treasure for the light it sheds on lesser-known communities and experiences of Jews who emigrated to Great Britain.


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