Top Iraqi biologist heads to Museum of Science and Industry for Refugee Week science clinic

By Culture24 Staff | 17 June 2010
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a photo of a man holding a plant and a plastic bottle

Dr Nouri Baker is an expert in the study of plants and plant disease

MOSI, the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, has invited a top Iraqi biologist to demonstrate innovative methods of growing plants as part of its activities to mark Refugee Week.

Dr Nouri Baker is an expert in the study of plants and plant disease and a former lecturer at the University of Baghdad. He will be sharing his expertise on how recycled cans and bottles can be used to grow and propagate a variety of plants.

Dr Baker and his family fled Iraq in 2007 after his son was killed by insurgents. Following a stay in Jordan he was sent to the UK as part of a UN resettlement programme and is now working as a volunteer at the University of Manchester's Faculty of Life Science.

"When one of your family is assassinated, everyone is targeted," said Dr Baker. "We left our house and our possessions. We suffered a lot. A lot of my colleagues have been killed and many are refugees; some are still in Iraq.

"I am now happily settled here in Britain now with my family but my main problem is that I do not have a job."

Dr Baker will conduct the workshop on Saturday morning. There is also a textile workshop and a special costumed character performance of ‘The Long Road from Naples’, which highlights the history of the development of Manchester’s Italian quarter in Ancoats.

The programme of events, which offers a chance to meet top scientists, is held in association with the University of Manchester and Refugee Action, who assisted in Dr Baker's resettlement.

Refugee Week runs until June 20. Meet the Scientists – Refugee Special takes place at the Museum on June 19, 10.30am-12pm and 12.10pm-1.40pm. Tickets are free but must be collected in advance from the information desk. For more details see

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