Global Women’s Issue
Violence Against Women in Iraq
Men in Iraq consider women to be the followers of men in both their household and in society. They believe women are not as capable as the men in decision making. Iraqi women are often limited to the stereotypical role of childbearing and managing the household affairs.
Honor killings, human trafficking, and domestic violence are a threat to Iraqi women and girls because of misconceptions in traditions and cultural beliefs. According to the UN Iraq 46% of girls who were aged 10-14 had been exposed to violence at least one time by a family member and 46% of women who are currently married were exposed to at ...view middle of the document...
In Iraq honor killings are still very common because the country has reduced the sentence under the Iraqi penal code.
Human trafficking is another common source of violence against women. Women are kidnapped and forced into neighboring countries for prostitution and sexual exploitation. Many of these women who were kidnapped reported being tortured and sexually abused. Men have said they target the women because they are weak and money has become more important than their lives.
It has been many years since President Saddam Hussein was overthrown and still the Iraqi legislators have not amended legislations that condones, and facilitates violence against women and girls. The Penal Code, written in 1969, says that a convicted murderer who pleads that he killed with “honorable motives” may face just six months in prison. It also allows husbands to effectively use violence against his wives. It says, “Disciplining a wife by her husband, the disciplining by parents and teachers of children under their authority within certain limits prescribed by Islamic law (Shari’a), by law or by custom.” As a result of this Police often fail to arrest men accused of violence against their female relatives. In a rare case when a male is prosecuted in front of the courts the judge gives a lenient sentence even if the woman was murdered. This kind of case sends out a terrifying message to women that they may be beaten or killed without consequence.
In November of 2013 Iraqi women started a social media campaign “Always United and Never Against Her.. You are Her, and She is You.” Over two dozen Kurdish and Arab bloggers, women’s rights activists, and reporters worked together to create the unified campaign as a part of an advocacy and social media workshop conducted by IREX’s...