Iran Emigration and Immigration

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Online Sources[edit | edit source]

British Overseas Subjects[edit | edit source]

Finding the Town of Origin in Iran[edit | edit source]

If you are using emigration/immigration records to find the name of your ancestors' town in Iran, see Iran Finding Town of Origin for additional research strategies.

Iran Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

"Emigration" means moving out of a country. "Immigration" means moving into a country.
Emigration and immigration sources list the names of people leaving (emigrating) or arriving (immigrating) in the country. These sources may be passenger lists, permissions to emigrate, or records of passports issued. The information in these records may include the emigrants’ names, ages, occupations, destinations, and places of origin or birthplaces. Sometimes they also show family groups.

Immigration into Iran[edit | edit source]

  • There were large Circassian migration waves towards mainland Iran as the Circassians were displaced from the Caucasus in the 19th century.
  • A Black African population exists due to historical slavery.
  • A substantial number of Russians arrived in the early 20th century as refugees from the Russian revolution, but their number has dwindled following the Iran crisis of 1946 and the Iranian Revolution.
  • In the 20th to 21st centuries, there has been limited immigration to Iran from Turkey, Iraqis (especially huge numbers during the 1970s), Afghanistan (mostly arriving as refugees in 1978), Lebanese (especially in Qom, though a Lebanese community has been present in the nation for centuries), Indians (mostly arriving temporarily during the 1950s to 1970s, typically working as doctors, engineers, and teachers), Koreans (mostly in the 1970s as labour migrants), China (mostly since the 2000s working in engineering or business projects), and Pakistan, partly due to labour migrants and partly to Balochi ties across the Iranian-Pakistani border.
  • About 200,000 Iraqis arrived as refugees in 2003, mostly living in refugee camps near the border; an unknown number of these has since returned to Iraq.[1]

Emigration From Iran[edit | edit source]

According to various sources, in 2010, there were an estimated between 2 to 3 million Iranians living abroad, mostly in North America, Europe, Persian Gulf States, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Australia and the broader Middle East. Others estimate a lower number, of around 1.5 million or less. For the most part, they emigrated after the Iranian Revolution in 1979. On 21 of February 2021 the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Iran) published new statistics showing that 4,037,258 Iranians are currently living abroad according to their data.

List of countries and territories by Iranian population For additional countries, see Iranian Diaspora".[2][3]
Country Iranian-born population in 2021 Article
United States 1,500,000 Iranian Americans
Canada 400,000 (2021) Canadians
United Kingdom 400,000 Iranians in the United Kingdom
United Arab Emirates 357,000 Iranians in the United Arab Emirates
Germany 319,000 Iranians in Germany
Turkey 126,640 Immigration to Turkey
Australia 120,000 Iranian Australians
Sweden 116,770 Swedish Iranians
Iraq 110,920 Persians in Iraq
France 90,000 Iranians in France
Netherlands 52,000 Iranians in the Netherlands
Austria 40,000 Demographics of Austria

Records of Iranian Emigrants in Their Destination Nations[edit | edit source]

Dark thin font green pin Version 4.png One option is to look for records about the ancestor in the country of destination, the country they immigrated into. See links to Wiki articles about immigration records for major destination countries below. Additional Wiki articles for other destinations can be found at Category:Emigration and Immigration Records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Ethnicities in Iran: Recent Migration", in Wikipedia,, accessed 17 July 2021.
  2. "Iranian diaspora", in Wikipedia,, accessed 17 July 2021.
  3. Ministry of foreign affairs (Iran) published on 21,february,2021 on ,