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Cizre is located in Turkey
Location of Cizre in Turkey
Coordinates: 37°19′30″N 42°11′45″E / 37.325°N 42.19583°E / 37.325; 42.19583Coordinates: 37°19′30″N 42°11′45″E / 37.325°N 42.19583°E / 37.325; 42.19583
Country  Turkey
Region Southeastern Anatolia
Province Şırnak
 - City 460 km2 (177.6 sq mi)
Population (2000)
 Urban 94,835
Time zone EET (UTC+2)
 - Summer (DST) EEST (UTC+3)
Postal code 73xxx
Area code(s) +(90)486
Districts of Şırnak

Cizre (Kurdish: Cizîr, Syriac:Gziro) is originally a solely Assyrian town and district of Şırnak Province in the Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey, located at the border to Syria, just to the north-west of the Turkish-Syrian-Iraqi tripoint. It is populated by a majority of Assyrian people and Kurds and in addition there is a minority of Arabs. It is surrouneded by Tigris from the North, East and South, thus gaining its names, which means island in Arabic.

Cizre is historical Jazīrat ibn ʿUmar (or Jezira ibn Umar or Gazarta) Arabic: جزيرة ابن عمر‎, an important town during the Abbasid period and the Crusades as a gateway connecting Upper Mesopotamia to Armenia. During the Early Iron Age, Cizre was in the kingdom of Kumme, north of Assyria, and was part of the Neo Assyrian Empire. In classical antiquity, it was located in Corduene (Kardu). In 19th century scholarship, it was often named as the location of Alexander's crossing of the Tigris in 331 BC, further identified with the Roman stronghold of Bezabde although Stein (1942) is sceptical of this.

In medieval Islamic tradition, it is the location of Thamanin, the town founded by Noah at the foot of Mount Judi where the Ark came to rest, and a "tomb of Noah" as well as a "tomb of Mem and Zin" can be visited in Cizre. Al-Masudi (d. 956) reports that the spot where the ark landed could still be seen in his time. Benjamin of Tudela in the 12th century adds that ʿUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb had made the remnants of the ark into a mosque.

Cizre was the seat of the Assyrian Church of the East Bishops of Beth Zabdaï (later Gazarta d'Beth Zabdaï) as early as the fourth century, and the seat of the Assyrian Chaldean Catholic bishops of Gazarta in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The Assyrian population of the Gazarta region was severely reduced in the 1915 Assyrian Genocide, and the Assyrian Chaldean Catholic diocese of Gazarta lapsed after the First World War.

Cizre is located on the River Tigris, which forms the border line with Syria at this area. The state roads D.380 (via Midyat) and D.400 (European route E90) (via Nusaybin) that connect Mardin with Şırnak, as well as the route D.430 to Silopi run through the town.

The border checkpoint in Cizre, the gate to Malikiye in Syria, was in use between 1940-1972.[1]

Cizre, with +48.6°C (119.5°F) on July 30th 2000, holds the record for the highest temperature ever recorded in Turkey.

Noah's Mausoleum in Cizre


  1. ^ "Letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs" (in Turkish). Cizre Ticaret ve Sanayi Odası. November 29, 2005. Retrieved March 15, 2009. 
  • J. Obermeyer, Die Landschaft Babylonien (1929)
  • A. Ben-Jacob, Kehillot Yehudei Kurdistan (1961), 22, 24–25, 30.
  • Encyclopaedia Judaica (2008)
  • Aurel Stein, Notes on Alexander's Crossing of the Tigris and the Battle of Arbela, 1942, The Royal Geographical Society.


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