Agenda Item:4 - Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention
Statement by: Internaitonal Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD)
Delivered by Hannah Milhern / GICJ
15 March 2021
Thank you, President
We take this opportunity to highlight the deplorable human rights violations still occurring in Iraq.
As this Council is aware, demonstrations have been ongoing in Iraq since the beginning of the October uprising in 2019. Whilst the intensity of these protests have varied over the past 17 months, the violations have continued nonetheless and the number of deaths and injuries are rising every day.
Despite repeated calls by Iraqi citizens, civil society organisations and UN Bodies, security forces and militia groups continue to use live ammunition against demonstrators and human rights defenders, with at least 10 people killed since the beginning of this Session. This is to be added to the figure of over 700 other protestors and human rights defenders killed since 2019.
Victims are also being kidnapped, forcibly disappeared, electrocuted, their revolutionist tattoos removed with acid, assassinated, and on some occasions, their bodies dismembered. These are stories that must be communicated in order to demonstrate the very real and tragic impact on the lives of many Iraqi’s. These human rights violations also occur outside the context of protests, where human rights defenders are targeted for their online presence, journalism and advocacy.
Impunity for these acts must be tackled and accountability must follow. If we are to continue on this path of willful inaction, there will be unimaginable damage to the people of Iraq, their livelihoods, their ability to access to education and work, and their infrastructure.
Justice, Human rights, Geneva, geneva4justice, GICJ, Geneva International Centre For Justice