Baghdad Is World's Worst City to Live In, Survey Says

Once an intellectual, economic and political powerhouse, Iraqi capital finds itself at the bottom of the list.

Iraq's capital Baghdad is the worst city in the world to live in, according to a consulting group.

The survey by Mercer, released last month, assesses quality of life in 239 cities, looking at factors such as political stability, crime and pollution.

Baghdad, once an intellectual, economic and political powerhouse, is at the bottom of the list, along with the Central African Republic's Bangui and Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince.

Residents of Iraq's capital deal with a whole host of problems on a daily basis, including rampant violence, poor supplies of electricity and clean water, inadequate sewage systems, corruption, terrible traffic and high unemployment.

During the month of February, the city saw 57 violent incidents, including 31 car bombs, a report by AFP said.

Baghdad has been around since 726 AD, when the Abbasid caliphate started building it, and went on to become the economic center of the caliphate. As recently as the 1970s, it was lauded as an example of a model city in the Arab world.

The world's top five cities, according to the annual survey, were Vienna, Zurich, Auckland, Munich and Vancouver.

The top cities in the Middle East and North Africa region, meanwhile, are Dubai, which ranked 73 on the list, followed by Abu Dhabi, UAE at 78; Port Louis, Mauritius at 82, Durban, South Africa at 85, and Cape Town at 90.