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Total population
3,500,000[citation needed]
Regions with significant populations
   Turkey 1,600,000[citation needed]
   Lebanon 500,000[citation needed]
   EU 900,000[citation needed]
   Germany 250,000[citation needed][1]
North Mesopotamian Arabic
Western Aramaic, Kurdish & Turkish
Sunni Islam
Related ethnic groups
Assyrians other Semitic peoples

The Mhallami[2][3] also Mhalmites, (Arabic: محلّمي‎, Mḥallame; Syriac: ܡܚܠܡܝ̈ܐ‎, Mḥallmāye/Mḥallmoye; Turkish: Mıhellemi) is an Arab tribe, most of whom are living in and around the city of Mardin, Turkey. Outside of the region, they are also known as Mardinli.

Originating from the Arab tribe of Banu Bakr, their homeland was Najd in central Arabia, but they were settled by the Umayyad caliph Muawiyah I to that region. They are now primarily speakers of North Mesopotamian Arabic (qiltu variant); in terms of religion they are Sunni Muslims of Shafi`i madh'hab.[4] There is also a contingent of Aramaic speaking Islamized Assyrians as a subgroup of their ethnic group.


After the Umayyad expansion into north Mesopotamia (661–750), many families from the Arabian Peninsula were settled to the region of Al-Jazira, Mesopotamia, according to Yaqubi, who lived around that time, in his book Kitab Futuh Al-buldan[5] about the resettlement to the region of Mardin.[4]

Mhallami of Lebanon[edit]

Lebanon had a population of 350,000 to 500,000 Mhallami prior to Lebanese Civil War.[6] Their origin and legal status became a particular concern when they started to seek asylum in Western European countries en masse in the early 1980s.[citation needed][7]

Mhallami of Turkey[edit]

Most Mhallamis in Turkey live in Mardin, and at the village of Yerköy.[citation needed]

The first Mhallami cultural association of Turkey was founded in February 2008 in Mercimekli village of Midyat.[citation needed] In 2015, the founding chairman Mehmet Ali Aslan became the first Mhallami to be elected a member of the Turkish Parliament from the Kurdish HDP party.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Organisierte Kriminalität: Schrecklich nette Familien; Spiegel Online (in German)
  2. ^ Fred Donner: Tribe and state in Arabia. Princeton University Press 1981
  3. ^ Otto Jastrow , Die arabischen Dialekte des Vilayets Mardin (Südosttürkei), ZDMG Suppl 1 XVII Dt. Orientalistentag. Vorträge Teil II, Sektion 6, Wiesbaden 1969
  4. ^ a b Fahd Al-Semmari (30 November 2009). A History of the Arabian Peninsula. I.B.Tauris. pp. 29–. ISBN 978-0-85771-323-0. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Die Libanon-Flüchtlinge in Berlin Ralph Ghadban (in German)Archived August 7, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Heinrich Freckmann, Jürgen Kalmbach: Staatenlose Kurden aus dem Libanon oder türkische Staatsangehörige? (Ergebnis einer Untersuchung vom 08.–18. März 2001 in Beirut, Mardin und Ankara), Hannover, Hildesheim, 2001; S. 3–4 (in German)
  8. ^ "A more colourful parliament". Agos. 8 June 2015. Retrieved 3 November 2015.