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The
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Omar al-Jaffal
Literature
2017–2019
Iraq
chosen by
01. January 2020 - 01. June 2020

Born 1988 in Baghdad/Iraq.

Omar al-Jaffal is a poet, researcher, and journalist. He is currently a main researcher in the research project A Locality in Crisis: A Study of the Local Governance Crisis and Public Protests in Basra at the London School of Economics/UK. As a journalist, he writes for international and Arab newspapers and websites, including Asia Times, Al-Monito, and Assafir al-Arabi. Omar is also the deputy director for the Iraqi Observatory of Human Rights and a member of the executive committee of The Iraqi House of Poetry.

In 2017 he received the Mustafa Al-Husseiny Prize for the best young Arab journalistic article, for his essay The Bitterness of Disappointment in Iraq. He was also shortlisted for the Dubai Arabic Press Award for young Arab journalists in 2017. Between 2016 and 2017, Omar was a fellow at Heinrich-Böll-Haus in Germany as part of the residency for writers in risk. 

Omar’s second poetry collection Life in an Exhausted Stretcher was published in October 2016 by the Netherlands-based publishing house Makhtootat. His first poetry collection The Betrayal of Miss Life, published in Syria in 2009, was awarded the first winning poetry collection of the publishing house Dar al-Takween. In addition, his poems were published several ontologies such as the Ontology of Contemporary Iraqi Poetry in Arabic, and Das Herz verlässt keinen Ort, an dem es hängt in Germany in 2019.