Syria Population 2017

18,957,745

Just recently, Syria was considered a rapidly growing country in the area, growing over 2% in 2009, and growing from just 6 million in 1971 to its current population of 18 million.

Syria's population is comprised of many refugees from other countries. In 2012, it was estimated that 1.8 million refugees in the country were from Iraq, most of whom were displaced during the Iraq war. Syria has also been home to large groups of Palestinians (560,000) and Armenians (100,,000.) Of course, that's now in the past, as Syria has been in a great deal of turmoil and its population is now tumbling out of control.

While Syria's population is currently around 18 million in 2016, this number is dropping every day. The United Nations reports that 5,000 people flee Syria every day, and 28% of its population has now been driven from their homes. There are now 9 million Syrians who have fled, and 6.5 million who have been displaced but stay in the country.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Human Affairs (UNOCHA) states that an estimated 13.5 million Syrians are in need of humanitarian aid in 2016. There are now 4.5 million refugees from the country in nearby countries. 117,658 are in Egypt, 245,022 are in Iraq, 635,324 in Jordan, 1.1 million in Lebanon and 2.5 million in Turkey.

Largest cities in Syria

The largest city in Syria is not its capital Damascus, but Aleppo, which is situated in the North East of the country.

Aleppo's population was recorded at 2,132,100 in the 2004 Census, although it has dropped dramatically since, given the civil war and millions fleeing the country. As the country is embroiled in a war, estimates on city populations are unavailable. Although 80% Muslim, it is also home to one of the largest Christian populations in the Middle East. According to the latest estimates, approximately 12% of the city's inhabitants are Christian.

Damascus is the second largest city in Syria, with a population of 1,711,000 (estimate, 2009). It holds the record as the oldest continually inhabited city in the world – there is evidence of human habitation in Damascus dating back to 9,000 BC.

Syria is urbanizing rapidly. It is estimated that in 2010, 56% of the people in Syria lived in an urban environment, and this number is increasing by more than 2% per year.

Syrian Demographics

Syria is a largely Islamic country; according to the latest data from 2007, 87% of the country's population was Muslim. Broken down, around 74% are Sunni and around 13% are Shia. There are approximately 2 million Alawi in Syria today, and representatives of this group dominate Syrian politics and the Syrian military. Syria's current President, Bashar al-Assad, is an Alawi Shia.

The other two major religious groups in Syria are Christian (around 9% of the population) and Druze (3%).

The largest ethnic group (approximately 90%) in Syria is Arab, mostly classified as Levantine. Other major groups in Syria are Kurds (2 million), Syrian Turkmen (0.75-1.5 million) and Assyrians (0.9 to 1.2 million).

The Current State of Syria

Syria's bloody civil war has done substantial damage already, and the country is in ruins, in many ways. Civilian neighborhoods have been bombed, sniper fighting and street fights have taken over and there is no end in sight. In mid-2012, rebels moved into Alebbo, the largest city in Syria, and 2/3 of the city was seized within weeks. Now, regime and rebels are locked in warfare, and the city crumbles. In 2016, it has been estimated that 470,000 people have been killed in Syria's war. Hafez al-Assad's Alwaites regime represents just one eighth of the country, and the Sunni Muslims (who make up 75% of the country's population) make up the resistance.

The UN estimates that 5,000 Syrians flee the country every day, and over 6.5 million people are homeless and displaced in the country. It's estimated that more than half of the refugee population is under the age of 18, and the refugees and displaced now equal 28% of the total population.

Syria Population in 2017Source:

Population Data via United Nations WPP (2015 Revision, Medium Variant)

Syria Population Growth

5.2 million refugees are expected to be registered as refugees by the end of 2014, with another 6.5 million internally displaced by December 2014.

In 2010, Syria was dealing with a surging population, but this has dramatically reversed. Last year, the population growth rate was -0.8%, but this has dropped much further. The number of refugees alone will top 5 million by just 2015, according to the UN, which means that Syria's population will be just 19 million in 2017. This drop does not include any further deaths from the country's civil war, which will only drive the population down past this point.

About Syria

Official NameSyrian Arab Republic
Languages SpokenArabic
BordersIRQ, ISR, JOR, LBN, TUR
Is LandlockedNo
Latitude/Longitude3538
Currencies UsedSYP

Syria Population Density

Name Population
Dayr al 'Asafir6,209
Tremseh6,927
Mukharram al Fawqani9,112
Al Ghantu9,412
Duraykish11,918
Salakhid12,842
Izra`13,882
Murak14,307
Shahba14,784
Al Qutayfah16,118
Qatana18,511
Qarah20,656
Ad Darbasiyah21,481
Kafr Laha21,819
Kafr Zayta21,845
Ad Dana21,987
Kafr Takharim22,436
Halfaya23,403
Al Kiswah23,526
Al Harak23,784
Jarabulus24,997
Subaykhan25,514
Nubl25,546
Tall Rif`at25,658
As Sanamayn25,702
Ash Shaykh Miskin25,920
Satita27,815
Dayr Hafir28,905
Inkhil29,076
Hajin29,237
Tayyibat al Imam29,259
Az Zabadani29,549
Tallkalakh29,754
Jasim30,283
Binnish30,354
Souran30,716
Tafas31,249
Salqin31,608
Al Qaryatayn31,748
Ma`arratmisrin32,163
Masyaf32,262
Jayrud32,352
Saraqib34,231
Tadif34,670
Al Qunaytirah36,143
Harasta37,348
Tallbisah38,491
Baniyas39,066
Jisr ash Shughur39,311
Yabrud40,502
Al Qusayr41,062
`Irbin42,474
Kafranbel45,652
`Afrin48,693
Khan Shaykhun48,975
An Nabk49,372
'Ayn al 'Arab50,000
Tadmur51,015
Ar Rastan53,152
Al Mayadin54,534
At Tall55,561
Albu Kamal57,572
As Suwayda'59,052
Jablah65,915
I`zaz66,138
Manbij68,888
Darayya71,596
Al Hasakah81,539
Ath Thawrah87,880
Tartouss89,457
As Salamiyah94,887
As Safirah95,832
Dar'a97,969
Douma111,864
Idlib128,840
Al Bab130,745
Ar Raqqah177,636
Deir ez-Zor242,565
Latakia340,181
Hamah460,602
Homs775,404
Damascus1,569,394
Aleppo1,602,264

Syria Population Clock

What is the population of Syria (as of September 13, 2017)?18,957,745
Last UN Estimate (July 1, 2017)18906907
Births Per Day233
Deaths Per Day61
Net Migrations Per Day 515
Net Change Per Day 687
Population Change Since January 1st175,185

Syria Population Indicators

IndicatorValueWorld Ranking
Crude Birth Rate 21.563 births/thousand74
Crude Death Rate 5.62 deaths/thousand162
Crude Net Migration Rate 9.527 people/thousand2
Life Expectancy (Both Sexes) 70.224 years132
Male Life Expectancy 64.569 years152
Female Life Expectancy 76.991 years103
Total Fertility Rate 2.801 children/woman69
Net Reproduction Rate 1.315 surviving daughters/woman64
Sex Ratio At Birth 1.05 males per female87
Infant Mortality Rate 15.491 deaths/1,000 live births97
Under Five Mortality 18.146 deaths/thousand101
Mean Age at Childbearing 29.403 years90
Rate of Natural Increase 15.703 68
Death Before 40 Probability (Total) 10.234 %147
Death Before 40 Probability (Male) 16.166 %163
Death Before 40 Probability (Female) 3.621 %94
Death Before 60 Probability (Total) 19.984 %132
Death Before 60 Probability (Male) 28.841 %147
Death Before 60 Probability (Female) 10.027 %88
Crude Suicide Rate 0.4 suicides/thousand167
Median Age (Total) 24.1 years150
Median Age (Female) 24.6 years152
Median Age (Male) 23.7 years149

Syria Population History

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Density Rank Growth Rate World Rank
201718,906,90750.477%49.523%1021053%61
201518,502,41350.623%49.377%1001060.33%60
201020,720,60250.571%49.429%11294-1.06%55
200518,132,84251.161%48.839%981033.23%56
200016,354,05050.771%49.229%891042.06%56
199514,331,96250.804%49.196%781092.78%58
199012,451,53850.809%49.191%671162.9%56
198510,667,24550.8%49.2%581163.26%57
19808,956,15550.798%49.202%481193.52%64
19757,564,00050.932%49.068%411233.36%69
19706,378,80251.029%48.971%341273.4%70
19655,398,33351.179%48.821%291303.3%74
19604,592,77751.384%48.616%251313.21%75
19553,921,86451.652%48.348%211303.08%80
19503,413,32952.063%47.937%181332.53%82

Syria Population Projections

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Density Rank Growth Rate World Rank
202020,993,58850.144%49.856%114964.02%59
202525,558,85149.727%50.273%139862.99%57
203028,647,47449.438%50.562%156821.49%55
203530,424,46749.187%50.813%165821.07%57
204032,070,45148.973%51.027%174800.97%59
204533,571,02948.798%51.202%182790.83%59
205034,902,40648.66%51.34%190800.7%60
205536,038,54548.562%51.438%196810.56%59
206036,958,08648.497%51.503%201810.42%57
206537,657,74648.472%51.528%205810.31%58
207038,166,97648.497%51.503%207830.21%59
207538,508,44048.566%51.434%209820.13%61
208038,703,41248.65%51.35%210820.06%61
208538,754,21248.742%51.258%21181-0.02%62
209038,666,74248.825%51.175%21080-0.09%63
209538,444,18348.909%51.091%20979-0.16%63
Data Sources
  1. World Population Prospects - Global demographic estimates and projections by the United Nations